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Apple's TV Will Have Sharp Screen

David Gilbert by

Apple's TV Will Have Sharp Screen

According to Walter Isaacson’s biography of Steve Jobs, the Apple CEO had planned on bringing an Apple-branded TV to market which would fall into line with the company’s mantra: “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

Now various reports are suggesting that Sharp will be providing the panels for said TV with the product possibly arriving as soon as the middle of 2012. According to an analyst at research firm Jefferies, Sharp is retooling a production line at one of its plants in Sakai in Japan to produce the LCD panels.

The retooled plant will specifically be set up to produce “modified amorphous TFT LCD panels” according to analyst Peter Misek. He suggests that all going well, the panel could go into commercial production in February 2012 with the so-called iTV available towards the middle of the year.

Misek told AllThingsD that despite this new information, the industry is still in the dark over what form the Apple-produced TV will take. “Based on our discussions, interestingly other TV manufacturers have begun a scrambling search to identify what iTV will be and do. They hope to avoid the fate of other industries and manufacturers who were caught flat footed by Apple.”

According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Apple is actually investing in Sharp’s panel manufacturing factories in Japan – though how much it is investing is unclear. but it won't be just the TV panels Sharp may be producing for Apple.

According to a source quoted by the WSJ, Apple’s next iPad is expected in 2012 with Sharp’s Kameyama No. 2 plant in central Japan set to produce the LCD panels for the updated tablet – as well as for the next iPhone.

Currently South Korean manufacturer Samsung supplies a lot of the components for the current gen iPad and iPhone including memory chips and LCD panels. The reported move towards Sharp comes as Apple’s legal battle with Samsung escalates globally over acquisitions of copying in relation to Samsung’s smartphones and tablet - and vice versa.

Samsung has declined to comment on the reports of Apple diversifying its display suppliers.

Is an Apple TV something which would be interested in purchasing? What would you want from such a TV? Let us know in the comments.

Source: AllThingsD and Wall Street Journal

Go to comments


November 24, 2011, 10:26 pm

I think it will sell, but at what cost?

Surely people will question this more so than a new product from Apple, but I must be honest; it is a well trodden market and I doubt Apple would be able to bring anything new to the market.

Internet TV? so what?
PPV? so what?
Linking computers to TV? so what?
1080p? Big deal...

Next revolution is 4K and if they had that, then we might pay more attention to it - otherwise it's just another television in an already flooded market.

Who cares?


November 24, 2011, 11:31 pm

I doubt Apple would enter an already-crowded market with a "me too" product.


November 25, 2011, 12:02 am

I think AppleTV will simply link into the iTunes ecosystem. It will enable the use of apps that are suited to the TV. The resolution of which will be a multiple of the ipad screen to enable for easy scaling. It will probably have all of the other features you expect, airplay, internet etc... but tie it within a tv where the software is priority.

Tv manufacturers have done a great job trying to get apps onto their tv's but it still feels like a hack job, like when a cheap £40 phone tries to do facebook on a device with a tiny low res screen without 3g. It feels incomplete.

The difficulties that Apple are probably facing are licensing the use of content over TV. Copyright holders try to extract every bit of value from a product they can. Going as far as to distinguish mobile devices from computers. Where does one end and the other begin?

Is a tablet a computer or mobile device? If they didn't focus entirely on money, there would be some great innovation in the digital media space.


November 25, 2011, 10:20 am

I really hope that the picture is just an artist's impression. I can't imagine Apple producing a TV that looks like a five year-old supermarket special. It surprises me that they are going with Sharp, though, given that their monitors are IPS, which (correct me if I am wrong) originates with Hitachi, doesn't it?


November 25, 2011, 11:38 am

I'm sure it'll look stunning. Will probably have Apple TV built in and run ios apps.

However, in true Apple style, there'll be silly restrictions: you won't be able to watch news when you want or it may not play well with other sources plugged in until you stand up on one leg and sing the Apple mantra ....!!!!


November 25, 2011, 12:17 pm

Entering a mature market is precisely what Apple have done in the past. Their product will look better, appear to perform better and they'll certainly market it better. Whether it is or not will be a matter of debate.

Greg Shewan

November 25, 2011, 4:57 pm

I predict stupidly expensive whilst looking lovely, in a market where the margins for profit are very slim already... it's going to stick out like a sore thumb unless it is very very different.

Super big iPad with a stand??????


November 26, 2011, 7:30 am

If it is like most things Apple it will look great and be more expensive than it should be. The main thing against spending all that money will be that the programmes won't get any better.

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