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Apple's Internet TV plans are much more important than an HDTV

Apple’s HDTV plans were reportedly scrapped last year, but that doesn’t mean it is out of the TV business. In fact, new reports of an Internet TV service might trump any hardware Apple was preparing to launch in 2014.

Reports earlier this week suggested Apple’s TV plans had long been in the trash (opens in new tab), even though Steve Jobs famously said he had “cracked” TV in his biography.

Even though no reason had been given as to why Apple has moved away from TV, the most common explanation is Apple could not find enough innovative ideas to separate its own HDTV from other providers.

Millions of people would barge past other TV providers to buy the Apple TV, but the profit ratio for a TV sale is much lower than an iPhone or Apple Watch. Apple tends to not work in markets where it is not making a high percentage profit per unit sale.

Apple is working with Disney, HBO, CBS and other TV programmers to create the Internet TV service. There are also plans to update the Apple TV set-top box, potentially creating an interface where a user can search Netflix, Hulu Plus and Apple’s own Internet TV for on-demand content without having to move between apps.

Depending on how serious Tim Cook is when it comes to TV's, we might see an overload of new features on Apple TV, alongside a reported change in design. Hopefully this means media like video games will be considered on the platform.

This new platform for TV is much more interesting than the HDTV, because Apple’s massive brand appeal to TV networks will allow them to create more alluring deals for customers. We might even see the first al-a-carte system, although it is unlikely to be a full “choose what you want” platform.

Considering US services like Sling TV and PlayStation Vue have already shown the foundations for what Internet TV can become, Apple could refine this early vision with cheaper prices, more customisation on plans and more content.

David has been a technology journalist for over six years, covering a wide range of sectors. He currently researches apps, app sectors and app markets for Business of Apps, and has written for ITProPortal, RTInsights, ReadWrite, and Digital Trends.