Latest tvOS 18 beta lockscreen find points to long-rumored Apple home hub

in Future Apple Hardware edited July 9

Continuing rumors that Apple will launch a new home device have been further backed up by the discovery of a hidden touchscreen interface in tvOS 18 beta 3.

An artist's rendition of a HomePod with a display
An artist's rendition of a HomePod with a display

Apple is treating what it refers to as "Audio & Home" as a platform, much like iOS and macOS. It's also repeatedly been rumored to be preparing a new device for the platform, perhaps a HomePod with a screen.

Now in tvOS 18 developer beta 3, there is a hidden interface reportedly called PlasterBoard. It's a system interface, like the iPhone's SpringBoard, and significantly it is for a touchscreen.

So far the only accessible portion is a lock screen, nearly identical to that of an iPhone or iPad. Although at present Apple TV 4K does not have the ability be locked.

That addition of a lock screen, plus the fact that it appears designed for touch, does suggest a new device is coming. Then, too, HomePods already run on a version of tvOS so it does appear to fit that a new model of that will come with a screen.

The hidden lock screen was first spotted by 9to5mac, which also recently uncovered references in code to an as yet unannounced HomeAccessory17,1 device.

Note, though, that strong rumors of a new home device have been circulating for a long time. Generally they appear to be always just about to launch, but never quite this year.

Apple has certainly been investigating developing the HomePod further. In one patent discovery, Apple has been seen to be looking at whether the HomePod's fabric covering can be utilized as some kind of display.

Rumor Score: Possible

Read on AppleInsider


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