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Wednesday, September 11, 2013, 04:57 am PT (07:57 am ET)

Overhauled Apple TV software with enhanced AirPlay coming Sept. 18

Along with releasing iOS 7 for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, Apple next week will update its set-top box, the Apple TV, with new software that will offer enhanced AirPlay capabilities.

Apple TV


Details on the incoming update were revealed on Wednesday by AllThingsD, citing people familiar with Apple's plans. The software update is reportedly set to arrive on Wednesday, Sept. 18.

While Apple apparently isn't planning on updating the Apple TV hardware, the company is set to launch an "internal overhaul" that will "tweak" the current AirPlay feature, which allows users to stream content from their iOS device or Mac to the set-top box.

After the update, users will reportedly be able to stream purchased content from the iTunes Store to another person's Apple TV, even if it isn't set up with their Apple ID and password. That media will reportedly be streamed directly from the cloud, rather than requiring a local device.

The tweak gives the Apple TV an ability offered by Google's new Chromecast, a $35 media streaming dongle the search giant launched this summer.

Details on Apple's alleged software updates headed for the Apple TV were first revealed last week, suggesting that the latest version will gain additional channels, content and functionality. Apple has been gradually adding new channels to the device in recent months, with the latest push supplying content from Vevo, Disney, the Weather Channel, and the Smithsonian Channel. Prior to that, in June, Apple added HBO Go, WatchESPN, Sky News, CrunchyRoll, and Qello.