Apple is expected to rename its Apple TV set-top box offering to iTV and the new device, which will share the iPhone 4/iPad hardware platform, will be adding some new features and shedding some old time favorites. [The old] Apple TV did not sell particularly well and has received modest specs upgrades in the past as well as a large price drop to help the device remain competitive (if at all). The updated iTV should position Apple in the living room space more competitively with the yet to be released Google TV offering.
The new iTV, will have the same A4 chip and 16 GB of flash memory that’s on the iPhone 4 and iPad. However, because it is rumored that the A4 cannot handle 1080p or 1080i videos with good stability, Apple will be dropping 1080p HD playback in favor of the lesser HD 720p resolution.
As it has been speculated before, iTV should be getting its own App Store from Apple, though it’s unclear whether those apps will maintain compatibility the with iPod Touch, iPad, and iPhone.
It remains to be seen if iTV will get support from Cable/Sat operators as Google TV seems to gather. Without TV recording capabilites, a TV appliance is nothing but a media player… that begs the question: will we be able to watch Hulu or Netflix over the web? Without Flash or Silverlight support in iOS, this seems difficult.