|A patent recently granted to tech juggernaut Apple has experts speculating that the new Apple TV, about which rumors have been spreading for years, may include a motion-sensitive remote.
The patent granted to Apple is called “Scrolling Displayed Objects Using a 3D Remote Controller in a Media System,” leading tech commentators on gottabemobile.com to suspect that the remotes for Apple TV will consist of motion controlled wands — similar to the Wiimotes that come with the Nintendo Wii gaming system.
The remote would contain several sensors that feed to a receiver in the Apple TV box, allowing users to gesture in order to input commands. This theory is further supported by Apple’s recent purchase of the company that created Xbox Kinect.
PrimeSense supplied Microsoft with the original technology behind the Xbox 360’s Kinect sensor, which used cameras and depth sensors to detect players’ bodies, and use their movements, to control characters in a game.
Microsoft dropped PrimeSense to develop their own technology for the Xbox One, which means that PrimeSense can now devote all resources to developing Apple products — like a potential remote for the Apple TV.
The new motion sensor also has many wondering if Apple TV will jump into the gaming market. They could store games locally or on iCloud, and even challenge Xbox One and PS4 for the gaming market if they play their cards right, but the future of gaming on Apple TV is still largely speculation.
“The industry has seen motion-sensing remotes before, but I don’t see this type of technology becoming a staple necessity in any household in the future. People tend to revert back to what is easiest — and there’s nothing more simple and easy to do than pressing a button,” says Bob Wallace, President of Remotes.com.
The new Apple TV was expected to be released this year, but many are now theorizing that a new version won’t come out until 2015. This is supported by sources that say Apple engineers have been told not to expect a launch this year and to prep for 2015 instead.
Apple TV hasn’t been upgraded for two years now, and according to gottabemobile.com, anonymous Apple employees are blaming cable companies. The ongoing merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable has complicated plans for Apple’s set-top box. Prior to the merger, Apple announced that Apple TV would “evolve” in 2014, but until now, news has stagnated.