How Apple could really clean house with AppleTV

I don’t own an AppleTV and probably won’t in the near future. Maybe it will get on my wedding registry. However, I have seen an AppleTV in action and my mind is buzzing with possibilities Apple has opened up.

If Apple allowed add-ons to AppleTV, some possibilities I just thought of:

  • AM/FM/HD tuner for local radio (with full control via AppleTV and the wireless remote…just another menu option on the main menu). Plug the tuner into the USB port and your all set.
  • Live access to streaming video. If ABC could figure out how to have on-demand high quality streams right from their web site, then why couldn’t Apple do the same? Imagine being able to subscribe to an entire season of Boston Red Sox baseball thanks to an AppleTV feed of MLB.TV, all live and streaming. Or whenever needed, access your 24-hour news network of choice. Or heck, how about watch your local news live, but all via streaming video? I can essentially do this with ABC.com’s web site right now (granted with prerecorded material, but at least on my Comcast internet connection, it is instant streaming). Say goodbye to paying for Cable TV as we know it.
  • Right now, speaker systems are a pain to hook up. Couldn’t you picture Apple designing a simple wireless surround sound speaker system at some point? I could, it is right up their alley…an era that is traditionally an eyesore (lots of cables and bulky speakers) and needs the Apple touch.

I won’t be buying the first version of AppleTV…but I could see it becoming something real special in the future.  I can’t wait until I can legitimately ditch Cable TV and get only the content I want (live or prerecorded).