According to one of TUAW’s tipsters, there is every possibility that the Apple TV is heading towards online gaming with the iOS 4.3 update. When we say online gaming, we don’t mean the poor offerings of Game Center, this could go much further.

References found in the latest beta of iOS 4.3, refer to “ATVThunder” and indicate online games and merchandising will soon be available via iTunes and then to your Apple TV. Think Apple’s version of Xbox Live! The possibilities are endless and could include scheduling online games with friends, viewing leaderboards and much more.

The Apple TV is more than capable of running iOS games, it has the A4 CPU, that is also at the heart of the iPad; which is a very capable gaming device. The A4 chip also supports Open GL rendering.

TUAW’s tipster also found a couple of other interesting references within the iOS 4.3 beta, “Sedona” and “Flagstaff”. Sedona is the name given to Apple’s video rental service and could point to streaming of content from the new Apple datacenter. Flagstaff is still an unknown service at this point.

Of course this could all be in place for a future iOS update and may not form part of iOS 4.3 at all. We will have to wait and see, hopefully it will not be too much longer. What do you think; would you like to play games online on the Apple TV? Let us know in the comments!

[TUAW]