Readers of the Monday Note, a blog and email newsletter by former Apple VP Jean-Louis Gassée and Frédéric Filloux, might have been surprised to see this week’s edition. Contrary to all of the recent blog posts that indicate that an Apple-branded HDTV might be forthcoming from Cupertino in 2013, Gassée puts the rumors to rest with a carefully reasoned argument stating why most pundits — and Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster — are wrong.
While Apple CEO Tim Cook told NBC’s Brian Williams last week that television is “an area of intense interest,” Gassée points out that this statement is nothing new. Gassée notes that the solution to today’s television/cable/set-top box mess is that “channels, shows and special events should all be presented as apps” and that “the technology isn’t an issue.” The problem is that the content providers don’t want Apple to have control over their product.
Gassée doesn’t “believe Apple will make, or even wants to make, a TV set.” As he notes, an Apple TV module that can be added to an HDTV and replaced when a new one comes out makes a lot more sense than purchasing a new big-screen TV every few years.
Gassée believes that Cook is really trying to say that the company will continue investing in the future of television until the obstacles are eliminated. He thinks that the Apple TV will continue to evolve, and that “someday, Apple will reach a limited agreement with a carrier such as Comcast.” Things will really begin to take off at that point. But that Apple-branded HDTV? It’s not going to happen.