Steve Jobs

Those of you that have been saving up for the oft-rumored Apple television set may want to consider putting those funds towards something else.

According to a new book from Yukari Iwatani Kane, the former reporter in charge of covering Apple for The Wall Street Journal, Jobs once bluntly told his employees that the company would not be entering the television market. In his new book Haunted Empire: Apple After Steve Jobs, Business Insider reports that Kane details a comment Jobs made at Apple’s “Top 100″ meeting that is a gathering of executives, managers and employees to discuss the state of the company. Everything said at these meetings is supposed to be kept secret, but it seems someone felt comfortable revealing the details of something that was said at the gathering in 2010.

On the last day of the meeting Jobs held a question and answer session with the gathered staff, and said that they could ask about anything they wanted. An unnamed employee took the opportunity to ask if Apple was going to next be releasing a television as rumors were already circulating at this time. Jobs’ reply, said without hesitation, was “No.” He reportedly went on to add ”TV is a terrible business. They don’t turn over and the margins suck.”

Jobs was well-known for saying one thing and then doing something completely different. In his biography by Walter Isaacson for instance, he said of televisions, ”I’d like to create an integrated television set that is completely easy to use … It would be seamlessly synced with all of your devices and with iCloud … It will have the simplest user interface you could imagine. I finally cracked it.” Additionally, current Apple CEO Tim Cook has gone on record stating that TV remains an “intense interest” for the company. Cook could potentially be referring to the numerous rumors surrounding an update to the Apple TV set-top box, however.

Companies are allowed to change directions on future products at any time. Considering the denial of a television was made nearly four years ago, and that the leadership of the company has changed as well, Apple could very well be developing a television set. At this point it is really anyone’s guess if this television will ever come to be, or if it is doomed to remain a mythical item discussed forever as what might have been.