The A5 chip in the newest Apple TV version is actually based on dual-core architecture, and also 41% smaller than previous same-code-name in the older hardware version. This is an important aspect to the new Apple TV, because significantly lowering the manufacturing cost to Apple.
With price tag just at $99 level per box, a lot of tricks pulled by Apple for minimizing the cost. Curiousity arise, because this set-top box thing for Apple is not exactly a headlining device. Video streaming and internet connectivity are become an integrated part of TVs, and other thing that people plug into their TV, make this set-top devices increasingly irrelevant.
Maybe Apple was looking at a way to introduce a new technology, with cheap selling this first-of-it-kind chip in that Apple TV. There’s nothing wrong run it through its paces just to make sure it worked just right. At least, if something went wrong, wouldn’t make a lot of waves, and it would be a smart move in product introduction.