updated 05:05 pm EDT, Thu September 21, 2006
Apple iTV and Pentiums
Recently, Disney CEO Bob Iger confirmed the presence of a hard drive in Apple's future iTV streaming media relay. Although useful, the revelation that the iTV could play locally stored content introduced the question of a central processor; the iTV will need processing power strong enough to decode H.264 video using at least the 640x480 resolution of videos bought through the iTunes Store. The solution may be a new Intel value chip set to be introduced in the same timeframe as iTV, reports Ars Technica. Though given the Pentium E1000 name, the new line will be a stripped-down version of the Core 2 desktop platform that (as with the mobile Celeron M 500) uses only a single core and 1MB of L2 cache. This reduction lowers the costs and power requirements to a point where a variant of the E1000 may be suitable for decoding most videos without compromising the $299 price Apple expects for its new hub. The use of the processor would also help Intel showcase its home theater PC initiatives, writes Ars' Jon Stokes.