Apple released its latest Apple TV 4K back in 2021. The newest generation of the streaming box didn't get a redesign but, instead, threw in a new chip that enabled higher refresh rates. The remote, however, was completely redesigned after years of complaints, making it bigger and better.
That upgrade got all of us through a couple of years but the time has come again where we must all start to wonder — what's next for the Apple TV? Thankfully, the rumor mill is already flush with ideas and interestingly, in some cases, makes the argument that we could be on the precipice of an entirely new Apple TV model.
Here's everything we know so far about the Apple TV (2022).
What will the Apple TV (2022) be called?
The heading of this section may have already given us the answer. Since the original inception of the Apple TV, every Apple TV has been called...the Apple TV. The only time there has been a change was when the company came out with a 4K-enabled model that was quite aptly named the Apple TV 4K.
However, the rumors of a more affordable Apple TV continue to grow, with some saying that it could come in the form of a streaming stick similar to ones offered by Amazon and Roku. If that is the case, we could be due for the third name in the Apple TV lineup — maybe the Apple TV mini?
Will the Apple TV (2022) get a redesign?
There currently aren't any rumors that the actually Apple TV box itself is in store for a redesign yet. The most recent redesign was when the company originally introduced the Apple TV 4K which was basically a taller version of the Apple TV HD, much like how the Mac Studio looks like someone stretched out a Mac mini.
As mentioned above, there are rumors that Apple could release an Apple TV stick as a competitor to low-cost streaming devices from Amazon and Roku, but those rumors are shaky at best right now. Apple is also not one to sacrifice user experience for the sake of cost, so unless it has figured out how to pack the full Apple TV experience into such a device, it's unlikely that we'll see one from the company anytime soon.
Is there a new Apple TV model on the way?
For 2022, the best guess we have so far regarding what kind of models we can expect from the Apple TV lineup is the same as it ever was.
According to a report from Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, at least one of the new Apple TV models is expected to get an upgrade to the A14 chip as well as an extra gig of RAM. The current Apple TV 4K, released in 2021, is powered by the A12 chip, so it's likely that Gurman is referring to the next generation of the high-end model.
"The new Apple TV, code-named J255, is in development with an A14 chip and an additional gigabyte of RAM. That compares with the A12 chip announced as part of the 2021 Apple TV last year and could be useful for additional gaming capabilities rolling out in tvOS 16."
The high-end Apple TV might not be the only model due for an upgrade this year. According to supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the company is working on a new "affordable" Apple TV that will be released by the end of this year as well.
The analyst says that it will be "a new version of Apple TV that improves cost structure." It's unclear if that means the company will introduce an entirely new Apple TV model to its lineup (like a streaming stick) or if will both update and drop the cost of the Apple TV HD. There are even rumors that Apple may be on the verge of adding the Apple TV HD to the company's vintage list.
"Apple will launch a new version of Apple TV that improves cost structure in 2H22. I think that Apple's aggressive strategy of integrating hardware, content, and service amid the recession will help close the gap with its competitors."
Either would be a good move, as the base model Apple TV HD still starts at $149.
Could the Apple TV (2022) support 8K?
The current Apple TV 4K supports...well, you get it — 4K resolution. With the 2021 model, Apple added support for higher frame rates at 4K in HDR — up to sixty frames per second.
However, there are now rumblings that the new Apple TV (2022) could support resolutions as high as 8K. According to a report from FlatPanelsHD, the iOS 16 and tvOS 16 betas include references to support for AV1. The codec, which is a royalty-free alternative to HEVC, is used by many to currently stream 4K and UHD Blu-Rays.
Because of its incredible efficiency, the codec is also favored as a tool for even 8K streaming. While 8K is rare, it is the next level of resolution that we will all enjoy one day — many of us remember when 4K was just getting started...right?
In addition to adding 8K support to the new Apple TV, the code in the iOS 16 beta suggests that the codec could also be supported across Apple's entire product line including the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, as well as the existing Apple TV 4K. The codec could have more benefits than just 8K but also better 4K streaming with less data usage. Anyone who has streamed video over a cellular network without unlimited data could appreciate that.
However, with 8K being so far away from the mainstream and Apple so slow to add features to the Apple TV, it's unlikely that we'd see the company jump so far ahead of the game and announce the Apple TV 8K in 2022.
What kind of chip and connectivity will the new Apple TV (2022) have?
As previously mentioned, it does look like the company is working on a new Apple TV model that will feature the A14 processor as well as an additional 1GB of RAM. Gurman says that the extra processing power may be used to increase gaming capabilities. Our own Gerald Lynch talked about what the overall performance boost could mean for gaming on the Apple TV.
Considering that the current Apple TV 4K runs the A12 processor, Gurman is likely talking about an update to the Apple TV 4K rather than the Apple TV HD. It's unclear if the more affordable model will also get a boost to the chip.
As far connectivity, the new Apple TV doesn't really need much in terms of upgrades, especially the Apple TV 4K. That model already comes packed with HDMI 2.1, WiFi 6, Thread, Bluetooth 5, and IR, so there isn't much need for upgrades there.
The Apple TV HD, however, is due for major upgrades. Both the chip and connectivity technologies are much older than the 4K model, so it would be great to see Apple bring that model up to date.
Are we getting a new Siri Remote with the new Apple TV (2022)?
Despite Apple releasing a brand new Siri Remote alongside the latest Apple TV 4K in 2021, we could be on the cusp of getting the next generation of the remote just one year later.
According to a report from MacRumors, the developer beta of iOS 16 makes reference to the Siri Remote 4, a name not used for any of the existing Apple TV remotes.
"The first two betas of iOS 16 include strings for the SiriRemote4 and WirelessRemoteFirmware.4 that do not correspond with any existing Siri Remote, according to Aaronp613, a contributor at AppleDB, an online database of Apple software and devices. Aaron said the original Siri Remote is identified as SiriRemote, while a revised version of that remote with a white circle around the Menu button is SiriRemote2 and the silver Siri Remote released last year is SiriRemote3. This leads to the possibility that SiriRemote4 is an upcoming remote for the Apple TV."
One of the main complaints (perhaps the only complaint) with the current Siri Remote is that it does not have Find My built into the device. People are even 3D-printing cases of their own so they can attach an AirTag to their remote.
While there aren't any details as to what could be featured in the new remote, adding Find My support seems like the low-hanging fruit that everyone is already asking for.
What will the new Apple TV (2022) cost?
This is one that depends on if we get a new Apple TV model or not.
Considering the fact that Apple is still charging $149 for the Apple TV HD in 2022 and years after it introduced the Apple TV 4K at a slightly higher price tag, it's safe to say that a drastic change to the pricing structure across the Apple TV models is unlikely.
That does not mean we may not get any difference in price. According to Ming-Chi Kuo, the company will introduce a "new version" of the Apple TV that comes in at a cheaper price for consumers. It's unclear if that means that the company will drop the existing Apple TV HD or if it will introduce a third model into the lineup.
While it would still seem odd for a non-4K Apple TV to exist in the lineup, it would be great if the rumor was true and we saw a new pricing structure like the following. However, these are just estimates at the moment:
- Apple TV HD: Starting at $99
- Apple TV 4K: Starting at $149
When will the new Apple TV (2022) launch?
As with most Apple product releases, we don't have an exact date as to when the new Apple TV might launch. However, there are a few things that give us a general idea as to when that might be.
As previously mentioned, supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo weighed in on what we might expect from the new Apple TV. He also said that he expects the new version to launch in the second half of 2022:
"Apple will launch a new version of Apple TV that improves cost structure in 2H22."
Apple also launched a promotion for the current Apple TV HD and Apple TV 4K in July that offered customers a $50 gift card with the purchase of either, a rare move for the company that perked up the ears of everyone who is expecting the company to announce a new generation.
It's been a while since Apple launched a product by press release, so it's likely that the company will introduce the new Apple TV at a virtual or in-person event in the fall.
If you do pick up the new Apple TV, or any Apple TV for that matter, check out our list of the best TVs for Apple TV 2022 to ensure you have the best video quality to go along with your new streaming box.
Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.
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