Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster has been claiming that Apple was working on a television for a long time, with his more recent claims gaining serious steam over the past few months.
In a new research note pushed to investors by Munster yesterday (pointed out by AppleInsider), the analyst claims that Apple is already negotiating with a “major television component supplier” for components for their connected television. Barron’s quotes a significant segment from the note:
In Jan-12 we spoke with a major TV component supplier who has been contacted by Apple regarding various capabilities of their television display components. We see this as continued evidence that Apple is exploring production of a television. This latest data point follows Jan-11 meetings in Asia that led us to believe Apple was investing in manufacturing facilities for LCD displays ranging from 3.5″ mobile displays to 50″ television displays. In Sept-11 we met with a contact close to an Asian supplier who indicated that prototypes of an Apple Television are in the works. We believe TV hardware could be ready for a late CY12 launch…
Previous rumors have suggested that Apple design guru Jony Ive is already working on an Apple television in his Cupertino design office. The device may feature Siri-like voice-control and other rumored features as well.
Speculation surrounding an Apple-created television began circulating most vigorously after Isaacson’s Steve Jobs hit the shelves, in which Jobs states to Isaacson that he’d finally “cracked” the idea of a revolutionary new television interface.