By Matt Burns
The Apple TV is starting to look a bit stale. The current model was announced on September 1st, 2010, but being Apple’s hobby, it always takes a back seat in the refresh van. However, recent changes at Best Buy (BBY) and Amazon (AMZN) seem to suggest that the current model will soon be replaced.
Amazon and Best Buy are both selling the Apple TV $10 below its $99 MSRP. Plus, Amazon put a 2010 label next to the product name as if to suggest there will be a 2011 model coming soon. Major retailers rarely sell Apple (AAPL) products below their suggested price. It’s a practice usually reserved for clearing out inventory prior to product discontinuation.
A new Apple TV has long been rumored. Most assume that Apple will replace the single-core A4 chip with the now nearly ubiquitous A5 chip. The dual-core processor would likely make the interface silky smooth and along with helping 1080p playback. Apple doesn’t really have to update the Apple TV, though. The current model performs the current set of functions just fine. But a new model would hopefully bring a new feature set that requires a more powerful platform — like Siri on the iPhone 4s.
If a new Apple TV is in the works, it would likely hit in the coming days. The holiday spending spree is in full effect and Apple isn’t one to ignore shopping trends. If it’s not out soon, the next version probably wouldn’t be released until 2012