Rumours that Apple is about to release a new Apple TV have heightened today with news that an FFC filing has revealed that the next Apple TV will be even smaller than the current Apple TV.

The FFC filing shows new measurements for the box. Rather than the 98mm square of the current model, the new measurements are listed as 93.78mm square – meaning that the box loses almost half a centimeter from two sides.

While shaving a few millimeters off the sides of the Apple TV may not seem that groundbreaking, the interesting part is why it is possible.

According to MacGasm's report, the shrinkage is made possible due to the use of the Broadcom BCM4334 wireless chip that also features in the iPhone 5. Apparently it means the Apple TV no longer needs two chipsets to connect to Bluetooth devices and Wi-Fi networks.

According to 9to5Mac, this chip is also able to pick up FM radio. That report notes that there is a dormant FM radio receiver in the same chip inside iOS devices.

The model number A1469 mentioned in the FFC filing has not been mentioned before, according to reports. 

New A5x processor for the Apple TV

Yet more clues to the new Apple TV came from the latest Apple TV firmware released this week. AnandTech examined the Apple TV 3,2 firmware and found that the new Apple TV will be running off of an s5l8947x A5x processor. The same chip featured in the third generation iPad.

This processor will offer an improvement over the current A5 revision 2 chip that features inside the third-generation Apple TV.

This week's firmware update to the Apple TV has also sparked speculation about what a new version of Apple's set-top box might bring. With Apple adding Bluetooth keyboard functionality to its set-top box many are hopeful that Apple has some exciting new features to introduce soon that will benefit from the extra control offered by a keyboard.

Yet more evidence that Apple may be about to ship a new version of the Apple TV emerged this weekend with claims that office supply retailer Staples would be selling the Apple TV for just $49.99. It is feasible that the chain could sell the old Apple TV model at half price.

A mockup of a Staples webpage that appears to be selling the Apple TV at the discount price was published by 9to5Mac.

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