Tim Cook: Apple Is “Intensely Interested” In Building A Television Set

Tim Cook: Apple Is “Intensely Interested” In Building A Television Set

Apple CEO Tim Cook just didn’t talk with Businessweek today in an unpredecented interview, he’s also going to be on NBC’s “Rock Center” tonight talking to Brian Williams… and in a new preview of the upcoming episode, Tim Cook has hinted strongly that Apple will be entering the HDTV market sooner rather than later.

Here’s a quote from the Rock Center preview over at NBC’s website:

What’s next for Apple? Did Cook leave us with a clue?

“When I go into my living room and turn on the TV, I feel like I have gone backwards in time by 20 to 30 years,” Cook told Williams. “It’s an area of intense interest. I can’t say more than that.”

Presumably, Tim Cook actually has an Apple TV set-top box, so he’s not talking about that. He’s talking about an actual television set, not a box or other peripheral.

Here’s a video from the upcoming episode:

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Of course, as intensely interested as Apple might be in producing a real television set, it might be hard to enter the television space. Previous reports have indicated that as much as Cupertino wants to get into the HDTV game, the existing cable companies and content owners don’t want to make deals under Apple’s terms, having seen what Apple has done to the music and smartphone industries before them.

Still, if Apple ever really wants to enter the living room, they have to build an HDTV eventually… and Tim Cook seems to know it. Let’s hope it comes soon.

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  • FriarNurgle

    An Apple TV set is a bad Idea IMO. Granted it’s a great way to get facetime in the livingroom. However people do not replace their TVs quick enough and an Apple branded set would be a tad expensive. I’d rather them continue with the hockey puck Apple TV and add in a small nondescript wired eyesight cam that sticks to the top of your existing set.

  • bootedbear

    >so he’s not talking about that. He’s talking about an actual television set, not a box or other peripheral.

    I’m not so sure. There is so much more that the AppleTV set-top box could be doing, so it’s also very likely that he’s referring to the next level of set-top box.

  • Martin Dobson

    I disagree with Apple’s decision… I feel that there is so much competition with other manufacturers in the TV Set field right now. If you think of every person you know with an HDTV set in their home, how many different sizes are out there. There’s no one true size that rules over everything. 42″ and 46″ might be the most common, but then you will have your hardcores that want their 50″s, 55″, 60″, etc.

    I think that Apple should leave the TV set building to the other guys, all they need is a HDMI port and basically every TV comes with one of those now. (I’d rather a HDBaseT port, but thats a few years away). Apple makes a monitor currently, the Thunderbolt and Cinema displays, gorgeous pieces of hardware, but at $999 for a 27″, I’d hate to see what that 42″/46″ would cost, let alone a 50″/55″/60″.

    The AppleTV can be an excellent device, as others have mentioned, opening up the device to allow an external facetime camera (like the iSight camera sitting atop of my monitor) and use it with another manufacturer’s TV set will get more sold, get to more people and add more people in to their “walled” ecosystem. The Apple TV is an excellent device with so much potential.

    I’m a diehard Apple Fan, I drink the Kool-aid, but there’s a reason why my Mac Mini is from 2006, why I have an iPhone4, my AppleTv is a 2 and my iPad is a 3rd gen. Those of us who work for a living can’t afford to keep upgrading year after year and sometimes have to settle for a Samsung 22″ Monitor for a ancient Mac Mini because although a Thunderbolt display would look a hell of a lot nicer on my desk, the Samsung 22″ is MUCH easier on the wallet.

  • MacNCheese

    How about a projector instead of a TV/monitor? Then you could essentially have any size you want within a certain range, given brightness considerations. The real question is how will the TV integrate with all of the other Apple products and still allow regular TV content to pass through as well?

About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his girlfriend and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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