Originally Posted by Morky
Yes, the TV is another platform, and they are fully invested in it. TVs currently come in one native resolution - 1080p. Older TVs can now be ignored, so your hardware capabilities argument is not relevant. Yes, existing iOS apps would need to be tailored to TV resolutions and you are correct that not all
developers would invest the developer time. Only untold thousands of developers. Of course the apps would be native to iTV, how would it even be possible to run a game on iOS otherwise? This is not as big a hurdle as you are making it to be. Yes, it's different from iOS on a touch screen, but the dev tools and technology stack are identical and are familiar to hundreds of thousands of developers. How many devs do you think are comfortable coding for PS3 or XBox?
Hardware differences between TV set-top-boxes and handheld touchscreen devices are irrelevant?
That distinction is of critical importance when writing software for either platform. The importance simply cannot be overstated.
When discounted or not held as paramount, we wound up with phone apps that technically run but are not a good experience on a tablet. The opposite is also true although not a terribly common direction to port software given when the markets developed.
In particular, games would be horrible if merely ported to different hardware. The differences in the platforms are so great that many genres of games would be horrible if implemented on the wrong platform. For instance, the controls inherent to pac-man do not translate well to a touch screen. Meanwhile touch screens are great for games that require selecting and interacting in objects in absolute coordinates rather in relative directions.
And that's just one example. If apple chooses to go that direction, they will need to plan quite carefully. Cheap and quick ports of existing software could ruin the entire iOS ecosystem.