Apple is reportedly planning a big increase in the price of the new Apple TV

tim cookREUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Apple plans to significantly increase the price of its Apple TV set-top box when it launches the new version in October, reports Mark Gurman at 9to5Mac.

The new version of Apple TV will be available in October and could cost about $200, according the report. The $200 price tag would mark a significant step up from the current version of the TV set-top box device, which sells for $69, and was originally priced at $99 when Apple first introduced it back in 2012.

The higher price reflects Apple's increasing focus on the device, which executives famously downplayed as a "hobby" a few years ago. The forthcoming fourth-generation version of Apple TV is expected to include several important new features including support for the Siri virtual assistant, a new remote control that may pack motion-sensors similar to the Nintendo Wii, and an app store that will support third-party apps, according to various reports.

In other words, Apple sees the device as a full-fledged platform, similar to the iPhone, that could help the company establish a firmer foothold in consumers' living rooms.

According to 9to5Mac, Apple's long-rumored over-the-top streaming television service, which will bundle several cable channels, will arrive as soon as next year for a starting price of $40 a month.

Apple is expected to unveil the new Apple TV device at an event in San Francisco on September 9.

Apple may sell the new Apple TV for $149 or for $199, 9to5Mac says. The company will continue to sell the current Apple TV for $69 as an entry-level product, the report says.

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