Apple’s ‘iTV’ is 11 years old?

“When I heard Steve Jobs’ ‘special’ announcement about a new product for 2007 called the ‘iTV,’ [I] just rolled my eyes thinking ‘you’ve got to be kidding me,'” Cynical IT Guy blogs for Business 2.0. “I guess Steve Jobs thought he’d really get away with it. I mean, sure, what kind of pissed off freak would remember something as obscure as that from 11 years ago and then nail him on it today?”

“The MacTV inspired another product (other than my performa) that is virtually unknown and will amaze you. And in 1995, I repeat 1995, this amazing product was called the ‘Apple Interactive Television Box,'” Cynical IT Guy writes.

Cynical IT Guy writes, “It was designed to stream content into a television. And this product looks awfully familiar to something Steve (11 years later) invented and called the iTV. But I guess when Steve Jobs announced the iTV, he must have forgotten that his own company had already made the iTV over a decade ago.”

MacDailyNews Note: “Stream content into a television” via wired connection, not wirelessly.

Cynical IT Guy continues, “It’s called iTV. That’s a codeword. We need to come up with a better name. -Steve Jobs quote from the iTV announcement speech. Aren’t you excited? It has a ‘codeword’ because it is so new that no one has even figured out what to call it yet. Now, I’m a nice guy, so when I hear Steve Jobs say that he’s trying to think of a name for an 11-year-old ‘new- product, I get confused and just want to help. So Steve, how about calling it the ‘Apple Interactive Television Box’ like Apple did in 1995. It’s catchy huh?”

Full article with more photos here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Michael” for the heads up.]

Wikipedia says:
Since the box was never marketed, no official technical specifications have been released by Apple. The following describes a typical unit:
• A/V ports include composite video on an RCA jack with two additional RCA jacks for stereo sound, an S-Video port, two RF coaxial cable jacks, and two SCART jacks.
• Mac-like ports including a Macintosh serial port, an RJ-45 ethernet port, and a SCSI port.
• The front of the unit has an Apple logo and an infrared receiver, apparently for interface via the remote control.
• The unit contains a 68LC040 CPU, and 4 megabytes of built in RAM, but no hard drive.
• An internal expansion slot of a type not found on other Apple products. There is speculation that this may be based on Apple’s PDS expansion slot.
Apple intended to offer the set-top box with a matching black ADB mouse, keyboard, Apple 300e CD-ROM drive, Stylewriter printer and one of several styles of remote controls.

“Apple Interactive Television Box” via Wikipedia here.

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Apple’s iTV will be much more like an upscaled iPod than a downscaled PC – September 30, 2006
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Cringely: Apple’s iTV strategy is iChat on steroids – September 22, 2006
The Motley Fool examines Apple’s iTV victims – September 22, 2006
Disney CEO Iger: Apple’s ‘iTV’ has ‘small hard drive on it’ – September 19, 2006
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LA Times: With iTV+iTunes Movies, Steve Jobs stumbles over the last 100 feet – September 14, 2006
BusinessWeek: If anyone can make bridge the great divide, Apple can with ‘iTV’ – September 14, 2006
The Beeb asks: Would you buy the Apple iTV? – September 14, 2006
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The Register: Apple event more like ‘No Show’ than ‘Showtime’ – September 13, 2006
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Mark Cuban: Things that are special about Apple’s announcements – September 13, 2006
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71 Comments

  1. well it has kinda been done before but not done right. also this was apple when Steve Jobs wasnt with the company when they were trying to just make anything with the Apple logo on it which turned out to allow them to waste money over and over again. there also was not a program called iTunes back then so everything this guy is saying has no relevance to anything except for him being an idiot.

  2. Hey, ITs Miniscule Guy

    There is Steve Jobs, and there is snow jobs. What is the point of this story? Is Jobs lying? Taking credit for someone elses idea? Or are you trying to impress by linking the two boxes because they are sqaure and video goes through them? That is a snow job.

  3. Yeah, right… The guy just “rolled his eyes” when Jobs announced iTv…. That’s why he waited more than 2 months to write about it.. Most likely, he just heard about this and decided it might make a story.

  4. huh? this guy is wrong.. that Apple Interactive Television Box, I believe was supposed to be new product to compete with webTV but it never came out (according to the wiki site) you see that the spec mentioned mouse, keyboard, printer such like that

    and the 90’s was the Interactive TV era. and WebTV cornered the market and Apple decides not to release it like Apple decide to scrap Pippin because PS1 and Nintedo was so popular and hard to beat.

    As for iTV, it is different beast, because it just stream content from your mac to tv which can be musci, movie, tv shows or whatever. not the way AITB was intended to.

    You could say that iTV may be superior product than Eyehome.

    Ane we know that iTV will be sold eventually under new name instead of the codeword “iTV”

  5. “Yeah, right… The guy just “rolled his eyes” when Jobs announced iTv…. That’s why he waited more than 2 months to write about it.. Most likely, he just heard about this and decided it might make a story”

    More likely is that it took him 2 months just to write his “article.”

  6. Perhaps, in addition to being avant-garde, he was also perceptive enough top realize that it wasn’t quite ready for prime time. Sure the Newton was in the same category and maybe shouldn’t have been released at that time but hey, this is how you gain experience.

    And that experience is saying….now is the time.

  7. I always thought Apple should design a cable box. Whether cable or satellite, TV is only going to become more interactive and require a better box. The maker would have to be partnered with the content provider for decryption purposes. The current boxes supplied by the cable companies are slow and the GUI is terrible. There is a market here.

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