More evidence has surfaced that the Apple iTV is on its way to market according to at least one analyst.
Piper Jaffary analyst Gene Munster, well known for being one of the most bullish folks out there when it comes to Apple, released a new research note to investors today that says the iTV is definitely on its way, it’s just a question of when. Speaking to the timing, Munster said:
We recently spoke to a major TV component supplier who has been contacted by Apple regarding various capabilities of their television display components. We are confident that Apple will enter the connected TV market, but timing remains uncertain. More specifically, the hardware could be ready quickly, but the timing and scope of a revamped TV content solution is unclear.
One of the biggest questions has been how the company will provide content to these sets, if they even will. Munster said of content:
We believe that Apple only enters mature markets with the goal of revolutionizing them, as it did with the smartphone. In television, we see an opportunity for Apple to reinvent how consumers discover and enjoy video on their TVs and mobile devices (live TV, previously aired shows, movies, user generated content, etc.). Without a revamped TV content solution, we do not think Apple enters the TV market. Since we know Apple is exploring television hardware, we are therefore led to conclude that the company is exploring a solution for live TV, and this solution could be one that has not yet been taken mainstream.
The analyst went on to explain a couple of different scenarios he sees for this, including the potential that the TV set will manage all of a consumer’s TV content – live and Web-based – from one unified interface, allowing them to skip the need for a set-top box. The second, and possibly most challenging, would see the company offering up content from networks via an a-la-carte system, but due to current licensing agreements, this would be the hardest to pull together.
The rumors of the iTV continue to build, definitely leading one to believe that the mythical television we have heard about for years, even from the Steve Jobs biography, has to finally be coming closer to being a reality.
Images associated with this post are speculative based on rumors.