"Apple Inc.’s vision for a new device that can be used as a set-top box includes features designed to simplify accessing and viewing programming and erase the distinction between live and on-demand content, people briefed on Apple’s plans said," The Wall Street Journal reported Friday, Aug. 17, 2012. [Please note: The WSJ is behind a firewall and may charge you to read its account.]
The articles continues, "The Cupertino, Calif.-based company proposes giving viewers the ability to start any show at any time through a digital video recorder that would store TV shows on the Internet. Viewers even could start a show minutes after it has begun. Time Warner Cable offers a limited version of this feature called Start Over.
The WSJ story adds: "Another significant feature of the Apple set-top device is likely to be its user interface, which could resemble the navigation icons on Apple’s iPad. While the design may change, the interface is expected to be easier for people to use than existing cable on-screen menus, widely viewed as clunky. Apple’s device also may create space on the TV screen for social media features, such as sharing TV shows through services like Twitter Inc., the people said."