Skip to main content

Apple iTunes 1080p Movie Service: Will iPad 2 Follow Up Be Full HD?

Apple may be on the verge of introducing a 1080p movie service via iTunes which will allow the consumer electronics giant to bypass Blu-ray - the only current physical optical format that supports full HD - for the Mac platform.

Appleinsider (opens in new tab) was advised that the company has received a number of feature films through its iTunes Store that optionally support a two-megapixel full HD resolution and may be set for release in September or October with a third format, HD+, added to the existing SD and HD format.

Current Android smartphones and tablets can already output to full HD via their HDMI ports and there are already rumours about Apple planning to release a full HD iPad 2 plus (or 3) tablet with a "Retina display".

The A5 SoC that powers the iPad 2 (and most possibly the iPhone 5) is already capable of supporting full HD streaming without slowing down the system.

Expect a new version of the Apple TV to come in September with the Apple A5 which would allow it to stream in 1080p rather than having to downgrade to 720p.

Furthermore, the iOS 5.0 upgrade is already capable of displaying and syncing 1080p content on the iPad 2 (and almost certainly on the forthcoming iPhone 5); bandwidth though is likely to remain an issue as full HD will require at least 10Mbps speeds for a decent full HD stream.

Désiré Athow

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.