DVR functionality could be built into an Apple TV

Summary:In recent briefings to media executives about its plans for an eventual Apple television, the company floated a number of ideas to shake up how you watch video in your living room. While some will seem familiar or obvious at this point -- Siri-based voice controls and iCloud integration -- integrating DVR capabilities hadn't been bandied about as much.

In recent briefings to media executives about its plans for an eventual Apple television, the company floated a number of ideas to shake up how you watch video in your living room. While some will seem familiar or obvious at this point -- Siri-based voice controls and iCloud integration -- integrating DVR capabilities hadn't been bandied about as much.

So let the speculation begin about how those DVR functions would work. Would they just be for shows rented or purchased from iTunes, giving you the ability to offload content so you wouldn't have to rely so much on streaming? Or would this include the ability to record content from the Apple TV itself, which would put it in competition with pay TV providers' own DVRs?

The latter case would once again suggest that Apple is gunning for cable and satellite companies as much as it is other TV manufacturers. If it could get enough content providers on board, the company could provide its own subscription plan for those who are no longer interested in a full slate of cable channels and just want to watch certain programs easily at any time. At a time when cable rates are rising thanks to channels like ESPN asking more for its programming, an Apple TV ecosystem could lead to a lot more cord-cutting.

We have no idea precisely when Apple will roll out any new TV products, but its openness with media execs suggests that it's thinking big -- as usual.

Topics: Hardware, Apple, Mobility

About

Sean Portnoy started his tech writing career at ZDNet nearly a decade ago. He then spent several years as an editor at Computer Shopper magazine, most recently serving as online executive editor. He received a B.A. from Brown University and an M.A. from the University of Southern California.

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