Rumor: Apple to launch iOS-based television?

Apple has taken over the music download business with the iPod and iTunes. It has made a huge dent in the smartphone business with the iPhone. But is the company thinking about the television as its next opportunity? That's the newest rumor on the Internet today. The Daily Tech web site has posted up a story using an unnamed "former Apple executive" as a source who claims that Apple is planning to launch a television product with its iOS operating system running inside.

The story claims that Apple wants to merge its iTunes download service with its Apple TV hardware in a television display. The unnamed former Apple exec says that the company wants to "blow Netflix and all those other guys away" with this kind of hardware set up. The article claims that Apple is partnering with another well known TV maker that will actually create the TVs. However, those products will be rebranded as Apple television sets. The source is again quoted as saying, "You'll go into an Apple retail store and be able to walk out with a TV.  It's perfect." The launch of the Apple TV might happen this fall but it could also be pushed back into sometime in 2012, according to the story.

Obviously this kind of Apple Tv set up is similar to what Google has been trying to do with its Google TV-branded products. However TVs and set-top boxes with the Google TV software have yet to catch on with the public in part because many TV networks have not allowed Google TV-based products to view their Internet-based videos. However its possible that Apple's brand name might make a TV-based product more appearing to the general consumer.

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52 Comments

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No thanks Apple but I'll stick with my netflix and JVC 56" I bought back in 2005 and not have to worry about paying a huge apple tax for something that will probably be unsupported in 2 years or less anyways.

Microsoft could do something simalar too. Xbox TV with Kinect installed in it . It would blow off anything there competiters will be able to offer.

Sorry, but I wonder why a TV would need an OS in the first place (I don't own one, so I don't know). It's a TV. Cable or satellite, and it's done. If this DID happen, I wonder what the charges for it would be.

kryten said,
Sorry, but I wonder why a TV would need an OS in the first place (I don't own one, so I don't know). It's a TV. Cable or satellite, and it's done. If this DID happen, I wonder what the charges for it would be.

This.
We've had television since the 1930s, and we don't need to seriously hinder it by giving it a proprietary dependency. An OS on a TV sounds nice, but the fact is that it's going to need support from companies like Apple. This is really unnecessary. I just say we stick with the old model that's been working for 70+ years, and that's where products are just expected to be in use forever. Not everything has to be "upgradable," you know.

kryten said,
Sorry, but I wonder why a TV would need an OS in the first place (I don't own one, so I don't know). It's a TV. Cable or satellite, and it's done. If this DID happen, I wonder what the charges for it would be.

Some people can't handle the complexity of installing a Roku box. Imagine TV coming integrated with media PC inside it. You turn ON and you get a simple interface to iCloud media content. Like Netflix, Hulu? Too bad, Apple will kill them all in the end.

I already have a feeling that the next-gen wave of TVs are going to feature different operating systems on them. Windows 8, Linux, Mac OSX/iOS -- just like OEMs we'll see TVs with Windows 8 or Linux-based distros and Apple will probably have their own branded TV with iOS as well. People who don't use computers on a day-to-day basis or aren't power users prefer spending money on TVs and stuff like that. Why not bundle an OS with TVs so everyone can be connected?

I don't know. I think they would be stepping over themselves. They are or were a computer company. They aren't sony where they can make any gadget in the world. What's next.... itoaster?

iTube perhaps?

Honestly, I hope they just keep improving Apple TV and continue to support using HDMI or other video standards. I guess all they really need to do is throw some more inputs for Apple Cinema Displays, maybe throw in a tuner for picking up over-the-air HD, and BAM the iTube is born. It isn't that far of a leap for them, but it would be bad if that meant they stopped the Apple TV.

eh wont be so great, dont make a freaking tv, make a CableCard compatable cable box, we have only TIVO and MOXI in the market right now, they need more choices! leave the TV as a monitor that can be expanded with other devices....

If competitively priced like the iPad, this could be good. I'll definitely believe it when I see it. But an iOS-based TV that supports apps at its native resolution with an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad as the controller? That could be a BIG deal. I think Apple would then become a serious threat to the gaming industry. Developers can write bigger and better games that will use controllers that give them the freedom to do whatever they want. Apple is already winning with content from iTunes but I think Apple needs to buy Netflix or Hulu to really make this viable. Maybe they'll use some of their money to buy the rights to television series and bypass cable companies, bringing it directly to you TV. There's a lot of possibilities if this rumor is true. I just don't think it is.

stezo2k said,
Apple are seriously turning into Skynet

Sounds a bit like the google TV if you ask me


You seriously didn't just say Skynet, Google TV and Apple in the same comment. Lol!!!

stezo2k said,
Apple are seriously turning into Skynet

Sounds a bit like the google TV if you ask me

Google is more like SkyNet. Apple is more like a larger farmer (they have a lot of sheep you know).

UndergroundWire said,

Google is more like SkyNet. Apple is more like a larger farmer (they have a lot of sheep you know).


Ehem, they're called iSheep.

Owen W said,

You know we still cover a ton of Microsoft news right? Check out all our coverage on WP7 alone... http://www.neowin.net/search/news?terms=wp7

It would not be so bad, except this is what, the 4th or 5th time you have ran this rumor/story? Becoming very Engadget-y, keep running the same article over and over and over hoping it becomes true. Clicks start to go down, recycle the same article and get more eyeballs. If it is wrong, don't worry, it is a rumor. If you were right, well, it took a year or two or ten, but you were right!!!

(BTW, sorry for comparing you to Engadget, nobody is that bad)

UndergroundWire said,

How innovative. \s

The remote control would probably be a iPod Touch with a special app on it.

Enron said,
No thanks. I don't need my TV to become obsolete and unsupported in a year.
I'm assuming you never buy TV's, then? Because most TV's are obsolete the minute you buy them.

Enron said,
No thanks. I don't need my TV to become obsolete and unsupported in a year.

With or without Apple; no matter what your TV is becoming obsolete every year. Panasonic, Sony, Sansung, etc. name me any company that doesn't introduce new models every year with different specs than a year before. Also Apple iOS devices generally kept supported for at least 2 or more years in terms of iOS releases. C'mon...

Simon said,
I'm assuming you never buy TV's, then? Because most TV's are obsolete the minute you buy them.

Forgive me, but most TV's don't need firmware updates, so hardware wise, yes.. but Software wise, my HD TV from 2007 still plays all modern broadcasts, (minus the odd 3D television show).

Enron said,
No thanks. I don't need my TV to become obsolete and unsupported in a year.

A) How would that be different from just about every other TV on the market?
B) Apple supports most iOS devices for up to 2,5 years (which is more than I can say of most, if not all, other companies), so I have no idea what you're talking about in the first place.

.Neo said,

A) How would that be different from just about every other TV on the market?
B) Apple supports most iOS devices for up to 2,5 years (which is more than I can say of most, if not all, other companies), so I have no idea what you're talking about in the first place.

Let's see, my HDTV from 2005 still works with any broadcast (except for 3D tv, but who cares about that). A TV that depends on apps that will be dependent on having the latest version of iOS? Different story.

Enron said,

Let's see, my HDTV from 2005 still works with any broadcast (except for 3D tv, but who cares about that). A TV that depends on apps that will be dependent on having the latest version of iOS? Different story.

So your solution is to get a TV that just doesn't use apps? You're better off having old apps than none at all...

asdavis10 said,

You fail.

I don't think you get it. This is an auxiliary function. I'd rather have it in a separate box than to have it built into a TV that would otherwise be useful beyond the span of 2 years (when Apple stops supporting it). Same reason I don't need a home theater receiver or video game console built into a TV set. But if you don't understand that, go ahead and pay extra for a TV that you're going to have to dump once the next version of iOS requires a faster processor.

Enron said,

I don't think you get it. This is an auxiliary function. I'd rather have it in a separate box than to have it built into a TV that would otherwise be useful beyond the span of 2 years (when Apple stops supporting it). Same reason I don't need a home theater receiver or video game console built into a TV set. But if you don't understand that, go ahead and pay extra for a TV that you're going to have to dump once the next version of iOS requires a faster processor.

The TV you buy today is the device you need it for today. If you're waiting for the latest and greatest then you'll never buy anything. New software requiring updated hardware is nothing new.

Enron said,

I don't think you get it. This is an auxiliary function. I'd rather have it in a separate box than to have it built into a TV that would otherwise be useful beyond the span of 2 years (when Apple stops supporting it). Same reason I don't need a home theater receiver or video game console built into a TV set. But if you don't understand that, go ahead and pay extra for a TV that you're going to have to dump once the next version of iOS requires a faster processor.


This.

Same reason I don't bother with any other TV that offers "apps".

Enron said,
No thanks. I don't need my TV to become obsolete and unsupported in a year.

so true. Why waste money on apple when google is better any way.

.Neo said,

A) How would that be different from just about every other TV on the market?
B) Apple supports most iOS devices for up to 2,5 years (which is more than I can say of most, if not all, other companies), so I have no idea what you're talking about in the first place.

Well XP Support is ending in 2014. That's a but more than 5 years.

Enron said,
No thanks. I don't need my TV to become obsolete and unsupported in a year.

How stupid of you!
You may get no more feature updates after a point but at no point will you be denied the use of the original function of the TV (i.e. watching tv, downloading from iTunes etc.).

.Neo said,
I don't see it happening really, but who knows.

I've always thought Apple was going to make their own TV. The Apple TV stuff has been lackluster so far but I could definitely see Apple making their TV. It might actually be decent but I don't see any Apple TV below $1,999

If anything I think Apple will sell this for a very completive price. Just look at what they did to software prices and the iPad for example.

P!P said,

I've always thought Apple was going to make their own TV. The Apple TV stuff has been lackluster so far but I could definitely see Apple making their TV. It might actually be decent but I don't see any Apple TV below $1,999

+1.. thats so true.. only the super duper rich will be buying that TV.. Im guessing between 2k and 3K minimum!. cant be lower..

i wonder if Samsung will be their partner in making this TV