Carl Icahn remains convinced Apple will build television set, despite report of project's demise

Posted:
in AAPL Investors edited June 2015
Billionaire investor Carl Icahn argued in a Tuesday TV interview on Tuesday that Apple will indeed make and sell a television set, despite a new report claiming that the company abandoned the project over a year ago.




Referring to TheWall Street Journal's story, Icahn told CNBC's Halftime Report that despite having read it he doesn't "even know what it says," insisting that the report was "ridiculous" with a "relatively misleading" headline.

"I'm not backtracking in anyway. I believe they [Apple] will do a TV. That's my belief," he asserted.

On Monday, Icahn issued an open letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook, suggesting that the company should already have a $240 share price and market capitalization near $1.4 trillion. The same letter also proposed that Apple will launch a TV next year, and a car in 2020.

Rumors of an Apple television persisted for years, but petered out some time ago, leaving Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster as one of the few people backing the idea. Earlier today, Munster issued a memo saying he no longer expects the product.

Instead of a full-scale TV, Apple is though to be throwing its weight behind a revamped Apple TV set-top that should be announced at June's Worldwide Developers Conference. It's expected to have support for Siri and an App Store, and feature hardware upgrades such as an A8 processor, a touchpad remote, and greater internal storage.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 33
    thewhitefalconthewhitefalcon Posts: 4,453member

    Picking up the banner from Gene, huh? Crazy Carl...

  • Reply 2 of 33

    TV market is a low profit business being dragged down by the flood of cheap Chinese brands. Even Apple would have a hard time selling high end TVs dominated by Samsung, LG, Sony. Integrating Apple TV into high end brands is an option, similar to Carplay.

  • Reply 3 of 33
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post

     

    Picking up the banner from Gene, huh? Crazy Carl...


     

    Considering the only comments that ever came out of Apple were from Steve and his comment to Isaacson was very vague, I think there has never really been a definitive go-to-market strategy for Apple regarding a TV. That they haven't yet offered one indicates to me that the closest thing to an Apple Television will continue to be the iMac.

     

    Incidentally, I'd love if Apple had a build-to-order option that included a digital TV signal card and built-in DVR functionality for the iMac, but I doubt I'll ever see that.

  • Reply 4 of 33
    jackansijackansi Posts: 116member

    I've always thought "There just couldn't be a single person who actually thought that Apple could make money long-term with an actual TV set (or even think it is a good idea to get in that market)"...  Guess I was wrong.

  • Reply 5 of 33
    blazarblazar Posts: 270member
    The tv ship has sailed... Why even have branded tv when the potential of AppleTV is not even realized? Where are the apple tv video games?
  • Reply 6 of 33
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    One complex of reports and rumors that no one is talking about concerns the investments that Foxconn and Apple were said to be making in Sharp's oxide backplane technology around 2012 and 13. Foxconn was said to be into it to the tune of 1.3 billion, I think, supposedly for 50-plus-inch screens.

    Icahn may have information on something to do with this program, which is hard to imagine Foxconn and Apple just dropping.

    I think it's obvious that the oxide production technology from Sharp is proving difficult, otherwise we'd likely have more than just the 5K iMac in the larger screen category from Apple.

    Would Apple do its own branded TV based on this tecnology? Only if it could excel in some compelling way other ways of doing big screens, say much better than plasma and much cheaper (and more reliably?) than OLED. Maybe Foxconn could test the waters under their own brand, and it's these signals that Uncle Carl is picking up.
  • Reply 7 of 33
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,921member
    Gene and Carl should roadtrip together.
  • Reply 8 of 33
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,023member

    Two thoughts...

    1. There is little Apple could do to improve the picture quality over the better 4K sets on the market. It's such low margin with slow upgrade cycles. Why bother? They can improve the user experience that is generally driven through a set-top box that is now delivered by the cable/sat company or Roku/ATV etc.

     

    2. You'd think with all his money, Carl Icahn would get those eyebrows groomed.

  • Reply 9 of 33
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jungmark View Post



    Gene and Carl should roadtrip together.



    The all-singing, all-dancing Apple Stock Manipulation and Imaginary News Revue.

  • Reply 10 of 33
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member

    Why not focus on "the brains" where the profit is and leave the low margin display panel to all the others?

  • Reply 11 of 33
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    What's the difference between a monitor and a TV? A TV usually has an antenna connection and a tuner. Perhaps Apple could make a $4,000+ 8K res monitor and throw a tuner in it for legal regulations. By then most or all of your video content will be coming from the internet anyway.

     

    I'm still thinking about a Mac Pro, but I sure would like to pair it up with an Apple branded monitor like I did before.

  • Reply 12 of 33
    bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member

    The only way Apple is going to come out with a TV is if it's a virtual reality set.

  • Reply 13 of 33
    emoelleremoeller Posts: 549member
    Steve's "I cracked it" quote in the book referred to Airplay. Apple should license (maybe for free) the rights to have Airplay installed in all new TV sets. This would be a classic win-win. Every TV becomes a display for any and all of Apples iDevices. They should do the same for Airprint and Airtunes.

    This one thing would all Apple devices to utilize everyone's TV's, stereos, and printers - all of which are commodity product markets that Apple does not want or need to play in....
  • Reply 14 of 33
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by EMoeller View Post



    Steve's "I cracked it" quote in the book referred to Airplay. Apple should license (maybe for free) the rights to have Airplay installed in all new TV sets. This would be a classic win-win. Every TV becomes a display for any and all of Apples iDevices. They should do the same for Airprint and Airtunes.



    This one thing would all Apple devices to utilize everyone's TV's, stereos, and printers - all of which are commodity product markets that Apple does not want or need to play in....



    Now that I like.

  • Reply 15 of 33
    accendoaccendo Posts: 2member

    I'd like to raise a motion to not have any more posts about Carl Icahn on this site. I don't care how much AAPL stock he owns. He is not an "activist investor." He is a fame-whoring nitwit who seeks only to hear the sound of his own voice.

  • Reply 16 of 33
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,036member
    TV market is a low profit business being dragged down by the flood of cheap Chinese brands. Even Apple would have a hard time selling high end TVs dominated by Samsung, LG, Sony. Integrating Apple TV into high end brands is an option, similar to Carplay.

    I have to agree and if you know anything about TV and how they are sold on the wall of TV and why Samsung does so well. The best analogy I can find it is like bugs to the bug light. Samsung turns up the brightness and color saturations which makes their TV standout in the crowed across the room and people are just dawn to the petty bright colors.

    This is hard to compete with, since most people have no idea what makes a good TV picture. They think brights and boldest is the best. If you want to buy a TV and compare them to see how true to color they are have the sales person run a nature video with water and blue sky and trees and such, Samsungs when compared to the TV with correct colors setting will look bad. If you look at a Samsung by itself you will not notice it. Put it next to Sony and you will see how off they are.
  • Reply 17 of 33
    Apple should make a TV and release it as a "hobby" and only for a limited time and a limited amount. To test the market. So there will be no crazy expectations. Kinda like google did with those glasses of there's. Just a thought. Because I'd buy it.
  • Reply 18 of 33
    geekmeegeekmee Posts: 587member
    Well, Mr Icahn is an example of why 'Hope is not a strategy'... And plans need to be based on more than beliefs.
  • Reply 19 of 33
    sockrolidsockrolid Posts: 2,789member

    Reminds me of a quote.  Let me think...

     

    Oh yeah, here it is:

     



     "If you want me to do things only for ROI reasons, you should get out of this stock."


     

    That was Tim Cook replying to a NCPRR representative at a shareholders' meeting.

    (The NCPRR climate-change-denying douchebag complained about Apple spending money on accessibility for blind users.)

  • Reply 20 of 33
    nightskynightsky Posts: 43member
    No comment from Ireland? I've seen him slag off so many people in this forum for suggesting an Apple Television set would not happen. Now where is he.

    Maybe Apple should waste billions on a Television set with long upgrade cycles and low profit margins. That would surely lower the share price and shut up Icahn.
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