Loop Rumors is reporting on a patent Apple has filed with the US Patent and Trademark Office entitled, "Multi-media center for computing systems." In short, the filing describes a "media-player with remote control capabilities" that is used to control several media devices, and even share data with those devices.
Perhaps the iPod will grow to include this capability, or maybe even the iPhone. It's also possible that the Apple Remote as we know it today may become more powerful, but it would certainly be more fun to control television with the iPhone. Heck, if my Newton can do it, the iPhone should be a cinch.