iPhone: Remote for Apple TV?

In 2005 Apple filed for a patent which is described as a universal remote control. The patent (As well as an earlier universal remote patent) overviews a touch screen, handheld controller with a giant display, which sounds oddly like the iPhone. Though unlikely that the iPhone would be able to serve as a remote Apple does really value integrating Macs with other products, preferably their own.

Context from the patent:
1. A universal remote control, comprising:
a display screen, a user input mechanism a processing unit configured to display information on the display screen and to accept selection data from the user input mechanism; and a wireless communication mechanism configured to provide communications between the processing unit and an appliance; wherein the processing unit is configured to accept display information from the appliance for display on the display screen; wherein the processing unit is further configured to accept information entered through the user input mechanism for communication to the appliance; wherein the wireless communication mechanism is configured to periodically broadcast a discovery command; and wherein if an appliance is in range, the appliance responds to the discovery command to facilitate communication of the display information from the appliance to the universal remote control; wherein a set of standard graphical representations of appliance-control mechanisms is stored in the appliance and can be sent over a wireless communications link to the universal remote control for display to the user.

Well, It sounds cool though I don’t think we will see it for a while. MAybe 2nd or 3rd generation Apple TV and iPhone.

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