“It looks like Apple just got serious about Internet video,” Adriana Lee writes for ReadWrite. “The company has given Apple TV, its streaming-media gadget, some prime digital real estate, clearing out a dedicated section of its online store to highlight the set-top box.”

“This retail positioning is significant, noted 9to5Mac, since it’s the first time the set-top box has gotten the royal treatment alongside Apple’s bigger product lines: the iPhone, iPod, iPad and Mac. Previously, Apple TV was hidden in the iPod section,” Lee writes. “There’s no doubt that, after the Apple earnings call took some of the shine off the iPhone brand this week, the company needs a new hit this year. And there has never been a better time to focus on a TV streaming device than now.”

“But Apple has never been known to care about trends and hype. Or market analysis. What it might care about, however, is consumer sentiment. The company prides itself on building products people absolutely love. The “unapologetically plastic” iPhone 5C wasn’t it. A perception that Apple isn’t an endless source of must-have devices has to hurt,” Lee writes. “Truly opening up Apple TV, making it a distribution outlet for developers, could be the move that makes Apple the master of the living room.”

Read more in the full article here.

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Next-gen Apple TV may feature integrated 802.11ac AirPort router, built-in TV tuner; focus on gaming – January 29, 2014