Analyst: Apple to debut TV set at WWDC

Analyst: Apple to debut TV set at WWDC

Summary: Cable providers could sweeten the deal by offering a $500 subsidy.


While most are expecting that Apple will talk about iOS 6 and OS X Mountain Lion at Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference set to kick off next week, one analyst says that we should brace ourselves for the unveiling of a television set.

This latest prediction comes from Jefferies & Company analyst Peter Misek, who estimates that the television will retail for around $1,250 and be called the iPanel. That price tag might not seem too high, but Misek explores a way to sweeten the deal by getting cable providers to offer a $500 subsidy. He claims such a subsidy "would certainly improve the value proposition" for consumers.

Misek says that while attitudes to subsidies are negative, he believes that an Apple television "presents a new and unique opportunity for the telcos to gain market share in a mature television market".

"Hypothetically," writes Misek, "if Verizon offered a $500 subsidy to new FiOS subscribers (but no triple play discounts) along with a $20/month Wireless video fee, the payback period would increase to 13 months. In our view, this modest increase in payback period would still be value accretive with higher customer stickiness and market share gains vis-à-vis competitors that may not offer iTV- like functionality".

Misek claims in his research note that Foxconn has already begun production of the television, and that it will launch in the second half of 2012. He further claims that carriers such as AT&T, Verizon, Rogers, Deutsche Telekom and France Telecom are testing the new TV in their labs.

Will Tim Cook unveil a television at this year's WWDC keynote? We'll have to wait until Monday to find out.

Analysts have been talking about an Apple television a lot lately. Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster claims that Apple plans to announce a TV in December that will retail for between $1,500 and $2,000 and come in a range of sizes, from 42-inch all the way up to 55-inch. According to Munster, Apple will have this TV ready to ship early in the new year.

James McQuivey, vice president and principal analyst at Forrester, blogged about how he believed that the best way for the Cupertino-based giant to break into the dwindling market was by ‘thinking outside the box' and manufacture the "world's first non-TV TV".

One issue that these Apple TV rumors is that they all fail to address how the TV will differ from the set-top box, or what the set-top box could be configured to do via a software update. It seems to be that the only advantage a TV would offer over a device that connects to any HDMI-capable TV set is that people wouldn't need to figure out where that HDMI cable plugs in.

Now how much would you be willing to pay for that?

Image source: Apple.


Topic: iPad

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • I think you've forgotten about the software

    The software is what will differentiate it, if they actually make one...
    • Agree

      The value proposition I think will be in the software and the "cool" stuff they can do with it, not so much the hardware.
  • Xbox.

    Xbox services are getting sweeter every month. Who needs the so called smart tv or 'iPanel'...
    • MS should be able to beat Apple

      In the MS ecosystem, users will be able to connect up Xbox's to various TVs around their homes, leading to consistent user experiences; use all-in-ones to access Xbox Live, effectively turning these devices into secondary TVs; show Xbox Live content on tablets / hybrids, and other Windows 8 PCs. Also Xbox Live is light years ahead of Apple TV.

      Apple's effort may very well take off, but I just don't see it. Unless telecoms are dumb enough to shovel ginormous amounts of their own money into Apple's coffers through large subsidies, again, just to look cool, I don't see how Apple can do all that well. It would be much better if telecoms teamed up with the MS ecosystem, as they could provide connectivity for a huge spectrum of PCs and devices, without providing high levels of subsidies.
      P. Douglas
      • I don't play games, so Xbox is worthless to me

        Not everyone is playing the Peter Pan syndrome.
      • The Xbox has other uses...

        The XBox has tons of other uses aside from games and even media. The Kinect can be used for Hollywood Style motion capture and there are tons of artists using it to create new forms of art. Microsoft will make a bundle regardless of what the Apple TV does simply because the future of employment in general in the U.S. lies firmly in the hands of content/software developers. Apple users are not content developers as can be seen by the market. They have only a few 3D development tools (of which Autodesk Maya is the only true high-end tool), they have literally 2 game engines (Blender and Unity niether of which is very good). Aside from that Apple users are stuck with very basic stuff. While Windows users have access to tools that will allow them to do pretty much anything on the planet. Apple's entire business plan does nothing but create tons of broke people who will be unemployable in 10 years. That is unless they have dual boot systems running Windows along with Apple's OS. But then Microsoft wins again anyway.
  • Waiting for It

    Ohhhh kay. At 500 per set, that's a fairly high cost of customer acquisition. I guess, as with the phone companies, it represents an amount to be amortized by a contract, and it also means that the device is sort of locked to the cable companies.

    Cable company churn is different than phone carriers. Cable is competing with telcos and satellite. Having a blessed set, does that really address why people do drop cable service? And, what will Apple's telco partners say, regarding the iPhone, when they see Apple jumping into that other market endorsing cable?

    I'm not feeling it. One can say that Misek is no Munster, but I don't know if that's enough to gain credibility.

    5 days and we'll know.

    And the rumors and analyses will stay the same, were they wrong this time, or move to something else. The Apple iCar! Drive me away!!!!
  • Where am I on this one?

    what Apple has in mind is combining the PC and TV I am interested. One TV screen is all I have room for (and a tablet on the couch of course.)
    Having everything in one place rather than separated throughout my place would work for me.
    However it must be priced competitively.

    BUT then it brings one other thought to mind.
    I see a windows desktop as work, an iPad as a toy to consume. Needless to say now I am confused, would I even want to combine the two? Currently my answer would be no, big time.

    But then we are just discussing a rumor.
  • A full Apple TV? It just seems weird

    I don't see any advantage for a TV set made by Apple that makes it better than a set top box. I enjoy my xbox, cable DVR, and computer connected to my TV. Having these separate items actually gives me more options.
  • If it is like every other Apple product, iPanel v1.0 will suck

    iPod 1 sucked. iPhone 1-3GS sucked. AppleTV still sucks.

    iPad 1.0 is the only product Apple has ever released that they got right the first time and even then, that was only because iPad isn't conceptually that different from iPhone.

    If AppleTV was really good, I would have more hope for iPanel for the same reason I mentioned above with the iPad. However, AppleTV is still a technological and a sales fail. If Apple releases iPanel 1.0, it too will be a fail. It will not outsell any of the other major TV manufacturers and that right there makes it a fail (according to all those who claim that if something doesn't "kill - destroy - remove from market" the Apple equivalent, then that device has failed).
    • William Toddtroll3

      I see you're still trolling with you "Apple sucks" line. Maybe you need to buy a Microsoft branded TV, to go with your Window phone, xbox, zune,etc.,etc..
      Jumpin Jack Flash
    • Apple TV

      The current Apple TV is absolutely brilliant product and at great price. I am confident you just have no clue what it can be used for.

      Bt of course, we all should be waiting for the Windows TV. In some bright future, that Microsoft has promised us. Some day.
  • If this is true..

    which I doubt, it's a stupid move and will show that Apple without Steve Jobs is like a ship without a rudder.
  • Apple TV lacks one thing...

    Competitive pricing... Amazon gives you 2x the time for rentals and often they are cheaper.
    • Huh

      Didn't know Apple TV gives you rentals. Which hole do they pop out from? Should examine mine more carefully and probably re-read the puny manual....
      Oh and where do I go to buy this Amazon thing, that is twice cheaper than the Apple TV?

      Those forums are great. One learns new things every day!
  • Subsidies?

    With the way subsidies have affected wireless carriers, I doubt any provider (cable or wireless) will be willing to foot subsidies for a TV. That's just not going to happen. And the high price will make this a low volume product and hence, it will have very little impact on Apple's stock. It may however, spur competition to provide better prices.
    • Subsidies

      Besides being bored by your posting this url over and over, I believe you don't really understand the cable TV business. Those companies by default subsidize you, by providing you with "free" settop box. The satellite TV companies sometimes do the same. Anything, to have you hooked and pay monthly fees.
  • Looking forward to it.

    Hope this smart TV would be competitively priced to reach the masses. Looking forward to it.

    - Sara
  • hmmm...

    As a 15 year mac user, it still boggles my mind how much of an about face they have done in getting their products out to the masses... if anyone can bump in the front of the line in the crowded TV market it's apple.
    I still can't figure out what would make this TV so different than the rest (except for playing nice with all things mac)
    To think it was only a few short years ago that I couldn't send an attachment to a windows user without jumping through hoops. lol
  • They could if only...

    If they wanted to truly stand out, they could make it touch, or more practical, motion enabled... Full integration with other iOS devices for control and management such as streaming any content that is displaying from the TV (source) to any iOS enabled device.