I’ve been holding off on getting an iPhone and AppleTV for a number of reasons. If they keep going down this path outlined in their patent they published today that might change:
A new patent application published by Apple today reveals that they have done considerable research into the possibility of an Apple-branded Digital Video Recorder (DVR). The Tivo-like device would offer the ability to tune into television channels, record and playback shows. The currently shipping AppleTV does not support any sort of recording or tuning functionality.
Of most interest is that Apple appears to be looking into ways to integrate their iPod or iPhone into this experience. They describe and picture an iPod-like device that would dock to the DVR. Customers could then sync their recorded television content with their iPod and also select future shows to also be recorded from the portable device. Once syncing takes place the future shows are added to the DVR’s recording queue and new shows are transfered to the iPod.