AirPlay Coming to an HDTV Near You?

By  |  Wednesday, March 23, 2011 at 3:44 pm

Bloomberg is reporting that Apple may be about to allow streaming media directly to HDTVs. The company’s AirPlay technology allows iTunes audio to be streamed to devices that support the technology, but it is apparently considering adding streaming video to the platform. This would then be licensed to third-party set manufacturers, Bloomberg says.

If things go as Bloomberg’s sources seem to believe, we may see the first AirPlay sets later on this year. It would also be a bit unlike Apple to do so, since traditionally it has preferred to control the experience from top to bottom.

Such an expansion opens up a multitude of possibilities. For example, an iPhone owner would be able to stream videos stored on the phone to any TV with the technology with minimal setup–no Apple TV box required. It would also help Apple to extend itself from just a computer and gadget maker to a technology licensor, which can be even more profitable since there is little overhead to the sale of information.

Currently Apple is reported to make $4 from each device sold with AirPlay on it, according to the Bloomberg report. Technology is already there to allow streaming video, sources say, although licensees are not permitted to access it under the current agreement.

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