iPhones will be the star of the show at Apple's big Sept. 12 event. But two other major product refreshes are also rumored to be unveiled: A third-generation Apple Watch and -- our focus here -- a new Apple TV box.
The current version of the Apple TV was launched back in September 2015, alongside the iPhone 6S. Since then, plenty of top-tier content partners have added apps. And Apple's software updates have delivered new features such as single sign-on and a universal TV app.
But sales of the box, the base model of which retails for $149, £139 or AU$239, have lagged behind major streaming competitors, including market leader Roku. And with Apple simultaneously investing up to $1 billion in original content, we expect Apple will want to give its video platform a shot in the arm.
With that in mind, here's what we expect to be announced in Cupertino on Tuesday.
New hardware with 4K and HDR support: Expect an upgraded Apple TV box that finally adds compatibility with 4K and HDR video. That means the new box will deliver the best 3,820x2,160-pixel resolution and -- more importantly -- the improved color palettes and contrast ratios of High Dynamic Range (HDR) video when connected to compatible TVs.
4K and HDR content: Of course, being able to deliver that improved video is worthless without compatible content. Expect Apple to highlight the availability of 4K and HDR-enabled iTunes videos (assuming the company has smoothed over pricing disagreements with Hollywood studios). Third-party apps such as the recently added Vudu service may also add 4K and HDR compatibility, bringing their Apple TV features up to parity with their apps on Roku and other streaming platforms.
Amazon Video app: As confirmed by CEO Tim Cook back in June, Apple TV will finally get an Amazon Prime Video app. In addition to adding another provider with a strong catalog of original 4K and HDR content, the overdue inclusion of Amazon plugs the biggest remaining hole in Apple TV's app lineup.