Apple Looking at 42″ and 50″ TVs, Having Trouble Signing Content Providers
All right, guys! It’s time to take a detour into Apple rumor land. I’ve expressed my reservations before about devoting too much virtual ink to the rumors swirling around Apple’s plans to become a television manufacturer, but the USA Today has put together an extensive write-up based on claims made by a former employee and information from a wide variety of industry folks that is probably a must-read for anyone even remotely interested in what Apple might have up it’s sleeve.
There are three main points here to pay attention to. First, there is the suggestion that Apple is looking at building a 42″ or larger television. This info is in sharp contrast to the information that Digitimes reported about 32″ and 37″ televisions, and honestly makes more sense for a home theater. It also leads to the second interesting point: an analyst at DisplaySearch, a company that tracks the television supply chain, is indicating there is no evidence in said supply chain that Apple has ordered panels, which would mean that the iTV is still quite a ways off.
Finally, the third interesting point concerns Apple having trouble signing content providers up for an a-la-carte distribution plan. This last point reminds me of the similar rumors we heard concerning Google TV before its release, but in this case I fail to see how it would cast a pall over the product as it did for Google TV. Apple already has a strong content distribution channel with iTunes and doesn’t really need to compete with Netflix and Hulu when Apple can already serve up their apps on any device. Does the idea of 42+” iTV get you excited enough to hold off on other TVs just in case this tech unicorn makes it out of the stable?
But a major roadblock for Apple along the way has been securing content needed to make an iTV succeed. The problems Apple is having securing content deals were described in an interview with a person who worked in the Apple TV group and verified by two television industry sources. All declined to be identified because of the confidential nature of the talks.