Apple TV’s hidden features could shake up the television industry

Apple Online Store“The new Apple TV could be Steve Jobs’ best sleight-of-hand trick yet,” Brian X. Chen writes for Wired. “A closer look at the code and the hardware powering the Apple TV reveals that there’s a lot more going on under the hood than the CEO shared.”

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Chen writes, “These secret ingredients could be the recipe Apple needs to shake up the television industry.”

iOS and third-party app support: There’s more than enough evidence proving that the Apple TV runs iOS. Dispelling any doubts, Apple recently posted a build of iOS 4.1 specifically for the Apple TV. Now that we know Apple TV runs iOS, it’s likely that third-party apps such as MLB at Bat or ABC Player will be able stream media to the set-top box, too… Daring Fireball blogger John Gruber confirmed that an AirPlay button is showing up in the MLB at Bat app, and he adds that apps using the built-in media controller will be able to integrate AirPlay.

Jailbreaking hacks:Third-party app support will probably be limited for the Apple TV, but that’s where the jailbreakers come in… [Expect] hackers to code some unauthorized apps soon to unlock additional capabilities such as video conferencing via your Apple TV.

‘Lowtide’ app:The Unofficial Apple Weblog’s Erica Sadun, a popular iOS programmer, took a close look at the Apple TV’s software and discovered that it runs an application called Lowtide — the software containing the set-top box’s media interface. Sadun dug deeper and found lines of code that suggest that Lowtide might eventually be extended to other iOS devices.

There’s much more in the full article here.

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

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