Voice-controlled Apple TV in the works?

Apple has its sights on a TV set that will incorporate voice commands and wireless streaming, sources tell The Wall Street Journal.

Apple is reportedly working on a TV set that will swap the remote for voice controls.

Apple is reportedly working on a television that will incorporate voice commands and wireless streaming.

Executives from Apple have discussed their plans with media executives at several companies, including the possibility of a TV that uses wireless streaming to access programming, movies, and other content, according to a Wall Street Journal report (subscription required). Apple is also working on technology that would identify users across a variety of devices such as phones, tablets, and TVs, people familiar with the talks told the newspaper.

Perhaps the most ambitious of Apple's TV ideas is a planned technology that would allow users to change TV channels or search for programming by using their voice, but the newspaper's sources cautioned that it might take longer to develop that function.

Apple representatives did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

It's unknown whether the voice-controlled TV would incorporate Siri, Apple's popular voice assistant app released with the iPhone 4S.

Earlier reports had suggested that Apple was working on a new digital TV based on iOS that might include a new technology to deliver video to televisions. Speculation heated up after Apple posted a job listing in February that advertised for someone to work on "new power management designs and technologies" for use on various Apple products, including a "TV."

Rumors that Apple is working on its own TV set have been circulating for the better part of two years. Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster first floated the notion in 2009 that Apple would take a bite out of the TV market in 2011 by introducing its first television. Munster wrote in June that Apple's iCloud infrastructure makes it all the more plausible, leading him to predict that Apple would produce a TV set by the end of 2012 or early 2013.

 

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