Ever since the iPhone launched, critics have been talking about the end of the game console era. Although their assertions were overblown, they weren’t entirely wrong — the iPhone has become the most popular gaming device in the world. Now, the latest report regarding the Apple TV indicates Apple might finally be making a move on the living room as well.
The increasingly busy Mark Gurman shared new details on the upcoming Apple TV on Monday, claiming that sources with insider knowledge believe the updated software, hardware and peripherals of the fourth-generation Apple TV will give Apple a chance to compete with the PS4, Xbox One and Wii U in the coming months.
Sources say that the bundled remote control, which will purportedly feature physical buttons and a touchpad, will allow gamers to interact with games downloaded from the App Store. But the Apple TV will also reportedly support more advanced Bluetooth game controllers as well.
This will open up new opportunities for developers that are used to building apps for a smartphone or tablet display. It will take time before Apple has a catalog of software that could compete with Uncharted, Halo or Mario, but it’s a step in the right direction if Apple wants the Apple TV to sit alongside other gaming consoles.
Gurman also reports that enhanced Siri functionality will come baked into the new device, with one source saying “you can navigate [mostly everything] on the new Apple TV [solely] using the new Siri button.”
Finally, the Apple TV is also set to “support the latest Bluetooth 4.2 and 802.11ac wireless standards for improved power consumption, data speeds, and signal reliability.”
Could real-time online gaming be a facet of the Apple TV’s future? We’ll find out on September 9th, when Apple is expected to debut the Apple TV alongside the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. The latest reports indicate that the device will go on sale in October for between $149-$199 with a new interface and an iOS 9 core.