Tags: Apple | TV | designs | testing

WSJ: Apple Testing Designs for an iTV Product

Wednesday, 12 Dec 2012 02:08 PM

By John Morgan

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Apple is in the early stages of testing prototype television set designs, fueling speculation a TV product could be in the wings for the popular technology company, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

Unnamed Apple suppliers said Apple is evaluating designs for “a large-screen, high-resolution set,” The Journal reported. The companies involved in the work are believed to be Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (more familiarly known as Foxconn), which assembles Apple’s iPhone and iPad products, and Japan’s Sharp Corp., the newspaper said.

"It isn't a formal project yet. It is still in the early stage of testing," a source told The Journal.

Editor's Note: Prophetic Economist Warns: “It’s Curtains for America.” See Evidence.

The company has apparently tested TV prototypes in the past, as it usually experiments with products internally before going to outside suppliers such as Hon Hai or Sharp.

Speculation about an Apple TV intensified this month when Apple CEO Tim Cook hinted in an interview on NBC about such a product. “When I go into my living room and turn on the TV, I feel like I have gone backwards in time by 20 to 30 years,” Cook said. “It’s an area of intense interest. I can’t say more than that.”

The Journal said Apple’s entry into the TV market could intensify competition with some of its own suppliers, such as Samsung Electronics.

“The potential for consumer lock-in that the television creates will likely drive platform companies to continue exploring the space,” Goldman Sachs said in a report. Apple competitors such as Google are studying whether to make a push into software for TVs and set-top boxes, The Journal said.

The newspaper said obstacles for Apple still remain, among them lack of apparent deals with operators to sell an Apple TV device, friction with cable companies and content owners and other entertainment rights issues.

Apple investors believe a TV product could be key to the company’s future, as sales growth from iPhones and iPads eventually declines, The Journal said.

Meanwhile, Fortune said there was little new information in The Journal’s story, and that what Apple may actually be focused on is the technology in the existing Apple set-top box product rather than a full-fledged Apple TV.

Fortune said a Morgan Stanley survey concluded Americans would be willing to pay an average of $1,060 for an Apple TV.

Editor's Note: Prophetic Economist Warns: “It’s Curtains for America.” See Evidence.

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