The new Apple TV launched in October after a three year chasm of silence stagnating with outdated hardware. According to Digitimes, Apple is upping the pace of its Apple TV hardware iterations. The Chinese report indicates that Apple is preparing to start test production of a new fifth-generation Apple TV in early 2016. The new device would apparently feature significantly faster internals to ‘drastically improve the hardware performance’ and ‘add new functions’.
Coupled with the usual disclaimers about Digitimes’ spotty track record, the report is very vague on exactly what ‘new functions’ a new Apple TV could offer. The Digitimes report implies a launch within six months of the current generation’s debut. This may upset buyers of the 4th generation product but Apple has done stuff like this before (remember the iPad 3 -> iPad 4 six month gap).