Smaller Apple TV box hinted at in FCC filing

A new FCC filing points to an impending update to the Apple TV that would shrink down the size of the device even more.

Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Josh Lowensohn

A new regulatory filing suggests Apple is readying a fourth-generation Apple TV set, one that looks a whole lot like the last two models, but with one minor difference.

That difference is size. The new version, which Engadget spotted in a filing with the Federal Communications Commission today, is 93.78mm around versus the current model's 98mm. It also carries the model number A1469, which differs from the current model's A1427 designation.

The filing comes on the heels of a reference to an unreleased Apple TV model inside of iOS 6.1, which Apple released to the public yesterday after months of testing. Like the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch, the Apple TV also runs iOS, though differs in various ways -- specifically a lack of touch interface and the capability to install and use third-party applications.

Apple updated the Apple TV's hardware last March with a third-generation model that added 1080p playback. Since then, Apple has put out a handful of interim software updates that added new features, including compatibility with iTunes Match and more recently Bluetooth keyboards. The company is still expected to roll out a full-fledged TV set, possibly as soon as this fall, putting any interim hardware releases under closer scrutiny.