Apple is reported to be finally phasing out its third-generation Apple TV. 9to5Mac reports the company has removed the four-year-old set top device from their online store, the little black box that could is also reportedly being pulled from Apple retail store shelves.
Apple has not officially commented on its phasing out of the third-gen Apple TV, though it’s clear that the process has at least begun. Up until today, the Apple TV was listed on the Apple TV purchase page under the “TV” heading on Apple’s website. As seen below, the third-gen variant and its $69 price tag were directly next to the fourth-gen model with an option to compare the features of the two. Now, however, the “Compare Apple TV” subheading is nowhere to be found on Apple’s website.
The direct link to the Apple TV third-gen product page still works, but reaching it requires either Googling the page, or entering the URL directly in the browser. (Pro hint: click the “direct link” link found earlier in this paragraph if you “want to go to there.”) This indicates that while Apple may still have some third-gen ATVs in stock, they aren’t exactly trying to push them out the door either.
9to5Mac’s report also notes that sources tell them Apple retail employees have received word from on-high to remove any remaining third-generation Apple TV models from store shelves and inventory.
Generally, Apple Stores are instructed to do this when Apple is preparing to sell the remaining inventory of a product of “end of life pricing,” meaning that it wants to discount the product in order to liquidate the remaining stock.
The third-gen Apple TV first debuted in 2012, and received an update around a year later, since then, all of Apple’s development and content love has been bestowed on the fourth-generation Apple TV, which offers the ability to run apps, play games, and offer Siri search features not available on the antique model.
We don’t know if Apple will continue to offer any software updates for the third-gen Apple TV, but unless there is a horrible security bug or the like discovered in the current software, this doesn’t seem likely. Farewell, Gen3 ATV! You have served us well. Now, please turn in your lanyard and the key to the back door. We’d like you to be out of the building by end of day.