Apple Granted Patent for Cable Box: Will Apple TV Upgrade to Live TV?

  • Apple was granted a patent this week for technology resembling a cable box that would allow users of its TV device to change channels via an onscreen menu that appears over the video display.
  • If the company acts on the patent, Apple TV “will upgrade to live TV, complete with regular and cable channels, and recording abilities,” reports CNET.
  • The original 2006 patent filing includes supporting images of TV shows from HBO, ABC, CBS and FOX — and indicates that search and browse tools would be integrated into the system.
  • “If Apple comes through on these designs, this could really boost the functionality — and popularity — of Apple TV, which has been limited by a dearth of native channels,” notes CNET. “Its greatest asset has been with connecting Apple devices for those who own many of them, but for everyone else, there has always been other choices to go to for TV programming.”
  • The post includes a copy of the full patent application.

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