iMac with TV functionality seen as stepping stone to Apple television

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Apple's first step toward building a full-fledged television set could be an all-in-one iMac with built in TV functionality, one analyst believes.



Brian Blair of Wedge Partners issued a note to investors on Wednesday in which he said he believes Apple will eventually build a true television set in the future. But before that happens, he thinks the company will take a step in between, and add television functionality to its iMac desktop.



He expects that Apple will redesign its iMac lineup in the first half of 2012, and that TV capabilities will debut in that product before Apple builds a full television set. In this way, Apple could integrate its Apple TV software and iCloud features into a slim all-in-one PC.



"We think this makes sense because while we typically think about the newest TVs hanging on the wall in large form factors," Blair wrote, "Apple could effectively start with what they already have on the manufacturing line and slowly push their offering from 27 inches and scale up from there to 32 inches and then move on to the 42, 50 and 55 inch market."



Blair correctly predicted in September that Apple would introduce just one new iPhone model this year with a design largely the same as the iPhone 4. That forecast came at a time when a number of other analysts were suggesting Apple would release a new low-end iPhone model geared toward emerging markets like China.







Rumors of an Apple television have persisted since the release of the authorized biography of Steve Jobs. To biographer Walter Isaacson, Jobs hinted at a completely new product that would feature "the simplest user interface you could imagine."



That's led to reports claiming Apple plans to release a full television set at some point in 2012 featuring Siri voice recognition technology, allowing users to control their TV set without a remote. Rumors of an Apple television are said to have sent existing TV makers "scrambling" to find out just what Apple's plans are.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 72
    No combadge, then ? later ....
  • Reply 2 of 72
    I really hope apple is smart enough to work with cable companies like Cablevision. Cablevision is making its own downloadable securtity systems (the samsung box cablevision uses already has this).



    Apple can work with cablevision and make it so that an Imac only needs a coaxial input and nothing else. This would eliminate the need for a cablecard.
  • Reply 3 of 72
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    1) iCloud is already featured in Macs.



    2) AppleTV's UI was already featured in Macs as FrontRow. It was the trial the pre-dated the AppleTV. Since then FrontRow wasn't updated and fallen into obscurity. It's not even part of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion.



    3) What's to gain from this unless you're putting it on all Macs because it's Apple working with networks to become a major distributor of content like the cable/sat companies? If it's just adding a tuner to the iMac then this is pretty tame and go against the speculation that Apple's HDTV will have no tuners or any other inputs whatsoever, just a connection to Apple's distribution network.
  • Reply 4 of 72
    cnocbuicnocbui Posts: 3,613member
    In other news, a street sweeper told a reporter he thought Apple would make new products and sell lots of them and that the price of Apple shares would go up as a result.



    AI went wild at the news and featured the article claiming it was the most significant news in years and would be remembered for years as a milestone in Apple's history.
  • Reply 5 of 72
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by majortom1981 View Post


    I really hope apple is smart enough to work with cable companies like Cablevision. Cablevision is making its own downloadable securtity systems (the samsung box cablevision uses already has this).



    Apple can work with cablevision and make it so that an Imac only needs a coaxial input and nothing else. This would eliminate the need for a cablecard.



    I think they have to go beyond the cable/sat companies. They have to ink similar deals that the cable/sat companies did with large upfront payments for large bundles of stations. They will become another competitor to your TV viewing the way satellite slow did against cable.



    The downside is for those that have cable for internet. If Apple et al. are mildly successful then you'll be dropping your TV subscriptions and going with internet only plans from your cable company. Since they buy their content from networks in large sums they need to maintain enough TV subscribers to make the purchase worthwhile. As this number drops so will their profit until it becomes a loss. This means a renegotiations with the networks, a raise in internet costs, throttle of internet, and/or capping your usage. This change will happen eventually and it will be the ugliest paradigm shift we've ever seen in technology.
  • Reply 6 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


    I think they have to go beyond the cable/sat companies. They have to ink similar deals that the cable/sat companies did with large upfront payments for large bundles of stations. They will become another competitor to your TV viewing the way satellite slow did against cable.



    The downside is for those that have cable for internet. If Apple et al. are mildly successful then you'll be dropping your TV subscriptions and going with internet only plans from your cable company. Since they buy their content from networks in large sums they need to maintain enough TV subscribers to make the purchase worthwhile. As this number drops so will their profit until it becomes a loss. This means a renegotiations with the networks, a raise in internet costs, throttle of internet, and/or capping your usage. This change will happen eventually and it will be the ugliest paradigm shift we've ever seen in technology.



    Possibly. Or just have cable subscription apps. If you can't beat them join them.
  • Reply 7 of 72
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,616member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


    I think they have to go beyond the cable/sat companies. They have to ink similar deals that the cable/sat companies did with large upfront payments for large bundles of stations. They will become another competitor to your TV viewing the way satellite slow did against cable.



    The downside is for those that have cable for internet. If Apple et al. are mildly successful then you'll be dropping your TV subscriptions and going with internet only plans from your cable company. Since they buy their content from networks in large sums they need to maintain enough TV subscribers to make the purchase worthwhile. As this number drops so will their profit until it becomes a loss. This means a renegotiations with the networks, a raise in internet costs, throttle of internet, and/or capping your usage. This change will happen eventually and it will be the ugliest paradigm shift we've ever seen in technology.



    I can not see this in any other way than that Apple works with the cable and sat cos in order to stream their internet based offerings though the Apple interface. You'd still have to pay for access and of course - for internet access. As I have said before, no matter what Apple invents there is no way the Cable and Sat cos are going to lie down and die. They will fight tooth and nail to stay in control. To that end the bigger companies are investing heavily in content providers.



    In the end we will just be charged more for our internet connections. I don't foresee an immediate future where tv content will become cheaper. We will still have to pay, one way or the other.
  • Reply 8 of 72
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post


    Possibly. Or just have cable subscription apps. If you can't beat them join them.



    That's fine for HBO, Showtime, Starz and their ilk, but what about the majority of cable shows that you aren't going to spend $5-15 per month just for one channel. I watch The History channel, TLC, Comedy Central and others on occasion but I won't pay $5 per month Ã* la carte for each of them.



    And then what about the local affiliates. Are they now going to die out or will need an antenna system or will will Apple have a special relay that works by your GPS, WiFI, and/or IP address to get you your local channels.



    This is the nut that needs to be cracked.





    edit: This is what happened the last time someone tried to crack that nut.
  • Reply 9 of 72
    tnsftnsf Posts: 203member
    And yet again its obvious why analysts are analysts.



    This analyst is approaching the topic from a bean counter perspective and considering what makes sense dollar wise and what makes sense production wise. How do his suggestions look if you actually consider the end user experience? Or the use case for an iMac that watches TV vs an actual TV? Is an iMac running OS X with TV layered on-top really going to provide an amazing experience? Would the interface finally solve all the usability issues that Steve Jobs complained about? Would it "lick it"? NO!



    Its amazing how many analysts comment on Apple without understanding Apple.
  • Reply 10 of 72
    zunxzunx Posts: 620member
    After image quality, the most important feature of a TV set for many people is the Full Picture-in-Picture (Full PiP), which requires at least two Digital Terrestrial Television (DTTV or DTT) tuners inside the TV set. Which manufacturers/models deliver that?
  • Reply 11 of 72
    conradjoeconradjoe Posts: 1,887member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Apple's first step toward building a full-fledged television set could be an all-in-one iMac with built in TV functionality, one analyst believes.





    No way. The Apple T V will be like a big iPod Touch.



    If people get used to a full-function device, they will never buy the Apple TV.
  • Reply 12 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


    I think they have to go beyond the cable/sat companies. They have to ink similar deals that the cable/sat companies did with large upfront payments for large bundles of stations. They will become another competitor to your TV viewing the way satellite slow did against cable.



    The downside is for those that have cable for internet. If Apple et al. are mildly successful then you'll be dropping your TV subscriptions and going with internet only plans from your cable company. Since they buy their content from networks in large sums they need to maintain enough TV subscribers to make the purchase worthwhile. As this number drops so will their profit until it becomes a loss. This means a renegotiations with the networks, a raise in internet costs, throttle of internet, and/or capping your usage. This change will happen eventually and it will be the ugliest paradigm shift we've ever seen in technology.



    Not everybody will want to drop cable. This would cost apple maybe $5 in hardware . They will be able to use their own interface to access the cable companies programming.



    I know that unless apple provided a way to watch EVERY show that i watch without a cable subscription i would not drop cable.
  • Reply 13 of 72
    herbapouherbapou Posts: 2,223member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post


    Possibly. Or just have cable subscription apps. If you can't beat them join them.



    Maybe they will add TV to imacs as a bonus but real iTV's will use ARM chips. For an all in one solution, the new TV sets will need to include:



    Obvious (current Apple TV features)

    * wifi internet and Airplay

    * Apple content from itunes.

    * Apps (TV content from internet like netflix)

    Plus :

    * Siri

    * Apps (games)

    * Apps (cable/sat signal decoders provided by cable co)

    * Apps (others, like facetime, ...)

    * Webcam (1080p)

    * ATSC tuner (required by law BTW)

    * PVR for tuner and cable signal. (requires a Netdrive or Time Capsule)

    * "Fake" surround sound system (like Bose) or 5.1 speakers connection

    * basic remote with optionnal revamp iOS remote app

    NOT included:

    * They probably wont support DvD or blue ray build in because physical media's are dying.



    With all that you have your TV + cablebox + game console + home theater in an all in one device that provide a single simple interface and integrates with your other devices like phones, tablet, computers...



    imo all the xtras will add about 1000$ compare to current TV sets, but you will have a lot external devices included in the iTV. If they can pull it off with only +500$ extras it will sell like hotcakes.
  • Reply 14 of 72
    There's no 'hitting yourself in the face with a blunt object' emoticon.



    Seems there's a dearth of appropriate emoticons lately…



    Apple tried that already.







    No one really wants a full computer instead of their television. Or maybe browsing the web via your TV, checking e-mails, and doing normal computer tasks actually has taken off and I've just somehow missed that huge revolution…



    I was going to post a picture of that one famous early system that let you buy stuff from your TV and see rudimentary "web sites" from around the world, but for the life of me I can't remember the name or the year it was popular… any old-timers care to fill me in?
  • Reply 15 of 72
    conradjoeconradjoe Posts: 1,887member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TNSF View Post




    Its amazing how many analysts comment on Apple without understanding Apple.








    They don't "get it". Apple is magical.
  • Reply 16 of 72
    rob55rob55 Posts: 1,255member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by zunx View Post


    After image quality, the most important feature of a TV set for many people is the Full Picture-in-Picture (Full PiP), which requires at least two Digital Terrestrial Television (DTTV or DTT) tuners inside the TV set. Which manufacturers/models deliver that?



    Ah yes, PIP, the feature everyone asks for but no one uses.
  • Reply 17 of 72
    No thanks.
  • Reply 18 of 72
    conradjoeconradjoe Posts: 1,887member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by herbapou View Post


    Maybe they will add TV to imacs as a bonus but real iTV's will use ARM chips. For an all in one solution, the new TV sets will need to include:



    Obvious (current Apple TV features)

    * wifi internet.

    * Apple content from itunes.

    * Apps (TV content from internet like netflix)

    Plus :

    * Siri

    * Apps (games)

    * Apps (cable/sat signal decoders provided by cable co)



    So far, so good.





    Quote:

    * ATSC tuner

    * PVR for tuner and cable signal.



    iCloud is your PVR. The tuner is obsolete with the other ingredients you list.











    Quote:

    * "Fake" surround sound system (like Bose) or 5.1 speakers connection

    * basic remote with optionnal revamp iOS remote app



  • Reply 19 of 72
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paxman View Post


    I can not see this in any other way than that Apple works with the cable and sat cos in order to stream their internet based offerings though the Apple interface. You'd still have to pay for access and of course - for internet access. As I have said before, no matter what Apple invents there is no way the Cable and Sat cos are going to lie down and die. They will fight tooth and nail to stay in control. To that end the bigger companies are investing heavily in content providers.



    In the end we will just be charged more for our internet connections. I don't foresee an immediate future where tv content will become cheaper. We will still have to pay, one way or the other.



    Working with the middle men is another way to go but with so many different cable network designs I'd think this would be harder than trying to be another competitor of cable an sat. Apple and MS have the money to pay the lump sums to the networks.



    Plus, if they get Time Warner and Brighthouse, but not Charter there is a huge gap in their business model, but going right to the networks will make them nothing but dub pipes supplying internet access.
  • Reply 20 of 72
    irelandireland Posts: 17,685member
    This analyst is an idiot.
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