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Apple's Tim Cook reignites television speculation

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Apple boss Tim Cook has reignited rumours that the world's biggest technology firm intends to make a major push into television, after saying that the small screen remains an "area of intense interest".

There has been persistent speculation over the past year that Apple would launch an integrated television set, dubbed 'Apple iTV'. But so far, the company has just stuck to its Apple TV content streaming set top box.

Speaking in an interview with NBC yesterday, Cook said of TV: "It's an area of intense interest. I can't say more than that."

New Apple TV


Cook has previously said that Apple TV was "just a hobby", but he tellingly lamented the current TV set-ups in most people's homes.

"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," he told NBC.

Previous reports stated that a prototype Apple TV set had been produced and gone through testing, but no product has launched, amidst speculation that Apple was struggling to convince the US broadcasters over its plans.

But Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster, a longtime Apple TV commentator, believes that the Apple iTV project will launch in November 2013, and even suggested pricing for the sets.

"It should cost $1,500 to $2,000 [£935 to £1,247] and come in sizes from 42 inches to 55 inches," he said.

Initial speculation about Apple's future plans for TV really fired after the biographer of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs revealed that he had "cracked" the TV interface before his death last year.

"I'd like to create an integrated television set that is completely easy to use," Jobs was quoted as saying by Walter Isaacson.

"It would be seamlessly synced with all of your devices and with iCloud. It will have the simplest user interface you could imagine. I finally cracked it."

Apple TV

© Apple



A move into television and, more importantly, the living room would make huge sense for Apple. Sales of its iPhone, iPad and iPod products remain strong, but some experts believe that Apple has reached the limits of innovation with its mobile devices.

Television remains an area that is crying out for disruption, and Apple no doubt feels that it can offer a better solution to people's needs, as it previously did with MP3 players, smartphones and tablets.

Creating its own internet-connected television would also give Apple another platform on which to sell content via iTunes and the App Store, particularly in terms of videos and movies.

But the big issue facing Apple is whether it can convince the broadcasters, particularly the US cable TV companies, of its plans for TV and that they do not pose a threat to their own business models.

What do you think about a potential Apple-branded TV set? Would you buy one or is it just a waste of time? Let us know below.

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