Wed, May 20, 2015 - Page 14 News List

Apple TV set on hiatus, report says


Apple Inc suspended plans to make a TV set more than a year ago, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

Instead, the company is working on a new Apple TV set-top box and related online services, the newspaper reported.

Those plans have been widely reported by Bloomberg News and other media.

Earlier on Monday, investor Carl Icahn wrote an open letter to Apple chief executive Tim Cook, saying that the Cupertino, California-based company is undervalued and its shares are worth US$240, 86 percent above where they closed on Friday last week.

Icahn’s new enthusiasm is driven by his belief that Apple will dominate in two new categories, television and automotive.

Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr declined to comment.

The question of whether Apple is going to do its own TV set has been a perennial topic. The company has been looking at ways to improve its set-top product, called Apple TV, and has been in talks with broadcasters, including ABC, CBS and Fox to provide Web-based television later this year, people familiar with the effort have said.

The TV service would include about 25 channels and could include cable channels from companies owned by the media conglomerates, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the talks are private.

Last month, HBO began offering a new standalone service on Apple devices for US$14.99 a month.

Cook has also fueled speculation about Apple’s plans for TV, including on the Charlie Rose Show in September.

“TV is one that we continue to have great interest in,” Cook said. “I choose my words carefully there, but you know, TV is one of those things that, if we are really honest, it is stuck back in the ’70s. Think about how much your life has changed and all the things around you that have changed, yet TV, when you go in your living room to watch the TV or wherever it might be, it almost feels like you are rewinding the clock.”

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