El chip A11 Bionic y la “envidia” de Google
The Apple TV fourth generation, the first with tvOS, has an A8 chip that seamlessly runs the system and plays content at 1080p (it is the chip of the iPhone 6, also present on the HomePod). The Apple TV 4K has a more powerful chip, the A10X Fusion, present in the latest iPad Pro.
But from the iBoot filtering, it seems that the fourth generation Apple TV could have had an A9X chip instead of the A8 that it ended up equipping . Why would this alternative have been contemplated?
The A9X chip is the one that was in the first iPad Pro, whose power is also more than respectable. A fourth generation Apple TV with that chip would have been far more capable than the model with the A8 chip that ended up selling, but there are many possible premises that you may have considered in Cupertino.
Maybe that Apple TV with the A9X chip was intended to be the fourth generation Apple TV, but they saw that with the A8 chip they already had enough for what they wanted to do. Or maybe they wanted to launch the Apple TV 4K with that A9X chip, but they saw that they had to wait for the A10X to be able to play 4K HDR content without difficulties and they parked the project.
Or who knows if Apple was planning to launch a slightly more powerful Apple TV and focused on having developers create video games for it, but they saw that with the launch of the 4K model that was going to be quite absurd. In fact, Apple already promoted the new model as a game machine thanks to examples like Sky:
We continue to see games with a premise and simple controls, adapted to the Apple TV’s Siri Remote . Perhaps Apple has in mind to enhance the games part of Apple TV with a more console-like controller, but you will have considered that it is not yet the time. Although this is only one possibility.
But it’s interesting that that model with the A9X chip has come to be considered. We will never know their original intentions, but at least we can be sure that Apple have been playing with several generations of their processors before deciding on a particular one for their living room player.