Apple Interactive Television Box – the iTV that wasn’t

apple_interactive_television_box.jpgFor you digg readers out there (hi, Digg readers!) you’ve probably already seen this link to the Cynical IT Guy’s blog where he rants about how iTV came out 11 years ago…and except for the fact that he is completely wrong…I totally agree with him. After doing only a few minutes worth of researching (i.e. – searching Google and reading Wikipedia), I found out enough about the Apple Interactive Television Box to confidently say that it was almost completely different from the upcoming iTV from Apple.

For those of you that may not know, the iPod wasn’t Apple’s first attempt to expand past the consumer PC market…it was just the first really successful attempt. Long before the iPod was changing the music and video worlds, Apple tried tried their hand at Digital Cameras, Video Games, and even Computer/TV hybrid devices. None of them were successful – most of them were released only in limited quantities.

The Apple Interactive Television Box was another product along these same lines. It was only a prototype, and was never mass produced. It was NOT the same as the upcoming iTV in several ways.

The AITB was much closer to a modern day satellite receiver than anything else. In fact, if you have a satellite receiver and you use the interactive content features (such as games, weather, and the like) then you have a pretty good idea of what the AITB was going to offer consumers…and a pretty good idea of why it was cancelled too. :)

The AITB also played content off of CDs and you could use the AITB remote to fast forward and rewind these interactive “game shows” and “educational programs”. There isn’t much left of the AITB out there, but if anybody out there has one they’d like to get rid of, just let me know…I’d love to get that case and mod the hell out of it.


  1. veda miller says

    I have a itv i have never had it activated but would like to it had literture from sprint but they could not activate it is there anyway to activate it please reply.


  1. […] Macintosh TV – Macintosh TV was Apple’s first attempt at Computer/TV Intergration…and the results were amazingly “eh”. Essentially all the Macintosh TV consisted of was a Performa 520 a built-in 14″ Sony Trinitron CRT Monitor that could switch to being a cable ready TV. It was met with a resounding “big whoop”, and discontinued a year later. Apple Interactive Television Box – I have already talked about the AITB in detail here at Apple Gazette, but – in a nutshell – this set top box was similar to a modern day satellite receiver with interactive content. The device was never mass produced, and thankfully so. It is nothing like the upcoming Apple set top box code named “iTV”. The only value this still born Apple project has these days is as a collector’s item due to it’s rarity. […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *