With rumors swirling that Xiaomi, China’s disruptive phone-maker, is about to release an Apple TV-esque set-top box, and today Sina Tech reports that photos of the device may have emerged. Well, its guts, anyway. The photo (below) is from an unnamed Chinese IT forum; the top device is the splayed guts of the Apple TV, the middle one is the purported Xiaomi TV, and the bottom one is an unknown brand of random set-top box.
The anonymous tipster to that forum also says the Xiaomi box will cost 499 RMB (US$80), up from the earlier rumor of a mere 299 RMB, Also, it will support both Apple’s Airplay and DLNA protocols to allow streaming over wifi to your TV from other devices, such as smartphones or laptops on your home network.
On a more obvious note, the set-top box is believed to run Android – but since Xiaomi’s phone runs that, it’s not exactly an area of mystery. The leaked picture also shows a few other unexpected things, like HDMI output.
We reached out to Xiaomi staffers in Beijing, but were told there’s “no official comment” from them. If this is for real, then it appears there are devices out there that are either at fairly early prototype stage, or perhaps even up to limited test-manufacturing batches. The rumors continue to indicate that Xiaomi’s Apple TV challenger will be unveiled in mid-November, ready for the usual buyers rush before Chinese New Year.
[Source: Sina Tech - article in Chinese]