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Foxconn CEO Fuels iTV Rumors 153

Posted by samzenpus
from the I-want-my-iTV dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Apple may soon begin production of a full-blown HDTV, dubbed iTV by Apple watchers, according to the Terry Gou, CEO of Apple's main hardware supplier Foxconn, in a brief interview with the newspaper China Daily. The newspaper reports that the device will feature 'aluminum construction, Siri, and FaceTime video calling' and will be manufactured by a 50-50 joint venture between Foxconn and the Japanese manufacturer Sharp; other details, including the schedule, were notably absent. Apple's spokesperson has declined comment. So it's not clear how solid this 'scoop' is."
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Foxconn CEO Fuels iTV Rumors

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  • Not interested (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:40AM (#39993965)

    Sorry, not interested in a propritery iTV where I can only watch what Apple wants.

    • Cool, Space 1999 used to come on ITV. Spandex and lasers.

    • by Bigby (659157)

      More like there would only be one size and one button. The remote will likely be an iPhone, iPad, or iTouch.

    • by fermion (181285)
      I myself am waiting for Apple to produce the ASHDTV. Anyone can produce an HDTV. I am waiting Apple to integrate second amendment rights into this first amendment device.
  • by advocate_one (662832) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:41AM (#39993975)
    try getting that domain back...
    • With the total market cap if iTV being 3%-4% of Apple's current value - yes, I believe the can. If Zuck dropped $1E9 on instagram, i think Apple can do 3x that on a company with actual revenue.

      Though it will probably be an Apple TV, not an iTV.

      • by Dogtanian (588974)

        With the total market cap if iTV being 3%-4% of Apple's current value - yes, I believe the can. If Zuck dropped $1E9 on instagram, i think Apple can do 3x that on a company with actual revenue. Though it will probably be an Apple TV, not an iTV.

        Well, exactly. The existing Apple TV units (first and second generation) were also known as "iTV" before they hit the market too- which makes the "[rumoured forthcoming unit being] dubbed iTV by Apple watchers" somewhat silly and confusing.

        Bottom line is that they changed the name due to problems with the iTV/ITV trademark before, and if it was a big enough deal then I don't see anything that's changed to make things different this time round.

        I'm sure that they could probably buy the .com domain if they

    • Not to mention trademarked - I suspect Apple will pay them for that like they have for every other "original" brand they have come along with.

      • by Dogtanian (588974)
        The difference here being that rather than some minor semi-abandoned product like "iPhone", the "ITV" name is in active and major use as one of the UK's major television networks and hence far more problematic. Even if ITV weren't profiteering and merely sought payment of what it would cost them in terms of name recognition and brand value to ditch the "ITV" name in the UK, it would probably work out *way* higher.

        They might figure out a deal, but since- as I mentioned above- the original Apple TV (1G and
    • Money can buy a lot of things. Assuming the owners of itv.com don't get greedy or else the opportunity will be lost.

      • The domain is too valuble. The brand itself is too valuble. Unless apple is willing to pay 5+ billions for it, I doubt ITV would sell out.

    • by Bigby (659157)

      ...or they will just use another name.

      Like iVid or iTel or iBigPad

  • wrong, wrong, wrong (Score:5, Informative)

    by sribe (304414) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:41AM (#39993977)

    It was not really an interview. It was a presentation to a group. And *none* of the other reporters present seem to have heard this alleged remark. More info here [cnn.com].

  • by Dave Whiteside (2055370) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:42AM (#39993981)

    see http://www.itv.com/ [itv.com]
    been a UK TV company since like forever

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Chrisq (894406)

      see http://www.itv.com/ [itv.com] been a UK TV company since like forever

      That won't put Apple off. Remember Apple Corps v Apple Computer [wikipedia.org]. One thing that ITV will have learned though is not to do any deal allowing them "limited use".

    • Apple is an expert at stealing other people's trademarks [zdnet.com] while simultaneously protecting their own.

    • by Dupple (1016592) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:56AM (#39994101)

      The product is called Apple TV. Not iTV.

      What the is new product is going to be called is anyones guess.

      It is just a rumour though, so is this other story.

      http://www.techradar.com/news/computing/apple/apple-in-talks-to-buy-tv-manufacturer-loewe-1080128 [techradar.com]

      Both contradictory rumours

    • Apple will argue that since it's a UK company, they should be using .co.uk and not .com. Apple's billions of dollars... err... "Justice Points" will surely help in any legal battle.

      • even then in the UK they can't call it iTV as that will be market confusion.

      • by dkf (304284)

        Apple will argue that since it's a UK company, they should be using .co.uk and not .com. Apple's billions of dollars... err... "Justice Points" will surely help in any legal battle.

        Wouldn't help against what is still a large company that's been openly and "notoriously" using the brand; it's their stock-ticker symbol for goodness' sake. It would take a phenomenal amount of money to move them, the courts wouldn't help move a large company out of the way for a new product with no brand penetration, and you can bet that ITV would demand that as cash, which would have Apple's shareholders in a fury. ("You're blowing how much on a domain name???")

    • by SimonTheSoundMan (1012395) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:58AM (#39994121) Homepage

      Apple would never call it iTV for this reason. And before people ask "why don't Apple buy ITV", ITV's enterprise value is 327.01 billion. Apple could afford that, but 1/3 of all their money just for a name, I don't think so.

      • It's really worth that much for Benny Hill and Space 1999?

      • From what I could tell, their enterprise value is actually £2.768 billion [telegraph.co.uk], making them rather affordable compared to what you said. That said, Apple is more likely to simply purchase a license to use the term in the consumer electronics space, or else to buy it outright from them, much as they did with the term "Apple" when they settled their lawsuits with Apple Records a few years back. Apple hasn't indicated any interest in getting into the media production industry, which is currently well outside

      • by rcs1000 (462363)

        Pounds and pence, I'm afraid - you've exaggerated the value of ITV by a solid 100x (or 60x if we assume that you were thinking its value was quoted in dollars).

        ITV has a market capitalisation of £3.2m and negligable net debt. So, an enterprise value of - say - $5bn. And they do Downton Abbey.

      • by expatriot (903070)

        ITV's market cap is £3.1 billion. The market cap is the price per share times the number of shares. If a company tries to buy all of the shares however, the share price goes up because shareholders know they can hold out for more. The premium can be anywhere from 10% to 100% depending on the feeding frenzy.

    • by damburger (981828) on Monday May 14, 2012 @03:26PM (#39998179)

      Notice how all American posters think that ITV is just going to be rolled over by Apple simply because it is a UK company they haven't heard of. ITV have a long history trading under that name, are still one of the main content providers.

      The UK is a large enough market, that Apple would not want a pointless legal fight just to take over a name that would, for most British people, sound odd associated with an Apple product. Especially seeing as "Apple TV" is already established as a thing.

    • by Dogtanian (588974)

      [ITV has] been a UK TV company since like forever

      Pedantically speaking, it's only since 2004 that "ITV" has referred to a specific *company* (i.e. "ITV plc").

      Originally, "ITV" referred to the UK-wide *network* made up of separate local independent television franchises (e.g. Yorkshire Television for Yorkshire, Grampian Television for North Scotland, etc.) that started in the mid-50s. (In fact, I remember hearing somewhere that the term "ITV" to refer to this didn't come until later on). From the 90s onwards the government allowed those companies to merg

  • This is getting dangerously close to the super high end crap they sell audiophiles.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by MadKeithV (102058)

      This is getting dangerously close to the super high end crap they sell audiophiles.

      No, not even slightly close [dedicatedaudio.com]. Yes, that's a POWER cable.

    • I don't care that much about the material, but I do care a *lot* about the finish.

      Brushed aluminum will ensure I never buy it regardless of how good it is. I will only ever buy a TV that has a matte black finish on the bezel. It's the only thing that doesn't intrude on my viewing.

      • by AmiMoJo (196126)

        Actually a glossy black bezel can be nice when done well. It reflects some of the on-screen image, softening the edge of the picture. It's a cheap and easy way to increase "immersion" in the image that almost all quality TVs use. The only ones you can get with matte black plastic these days are cheap supermarket crap.

        • I've never seen a grade 1 or grade 2 screen with a gloss black surround. They are usually matte black or 18% grey.

        • It isn't the reflection of the image that causes problems, it's the surrounding light.

          Unless you only ever watch TV in darkness, the bezel becomes a reflector for all overhead lights/windows/etc. The entire scene is moving but there's a fixed point of light on the bezel that throws the hole thing off.

  • by Grayhand (2610049) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:46AM (#39994015)
    It'd be interesting except every rumor I've ever heard quotes this 27" size which is small by today's standards and the prices I've heard are all well over a grand. If they came out with what amounts to a 42" iPad with a tuner and sold it for $1,200 to $1,500 I think they'd make a killing even if the resolution was the same as an iPad. Coming out with one half that sized when I can buy a 42" for $500 or $600 is pointless. 27" TVs sell for a couple of hundred not $1,500. What they are describing is an iMac without the computer part and a tuner thrown in. I really doubt the lack of a tuner is why people around the country aren't watching iMacs instead of TVs in their living rooms.
    • iDevices are this generations BMW car. They are incredibly well marketed and I cannot begin to count the number of people on many Apple forums that I visit who finance all of these devices.

      How do you tell when someone is going beyond their means in the realm of electronics

      1) They finance it

      2) They quibble over 25 and 50 dollar upgrades

      3) See #1 combined with going with a top end model when a lower end easily suffices

      Don't underestimate the power of Apple's marketing to have people make irrational purchasing

  • Would rather have an add-on box that had these features so I don't need a new tv and will work with anything out there. Why would anyone buy a TV with such integrated, limited features when they will be outdated long before the TV is?

    Give me a marginally smart tv (net capable, some apps), and then anything else let a standalone and easily replaceable box be added, sort of like, I don't know, the current AppleTV?
    • Why would anyone buy a TV with such integrated, limited features when they will be outdated long before the TV is?

      Because they already have enough external boxes (pay TV decoder, game console, etc.) creating a spider web of cables behind the TV, and they're running out of ports.

      • by h4rr4r (612664)

        Why not use a port multiplier?

        The simple reality is this will lead to less cables and replacing the TV way more often. Which is what the OEMS want.

        • I had never read the term "port multiplier". A cursory Google search showed that it can mean a switch box (select among several signals) or a signal splitter (run multiple displays from one signal). I assume you meant the switch box. But not all HDMI switches can be operated from the recliner, and even among those that can, it's still another remote to lose.
          • by Jeng (926980)

            Or another function you need to add to a Harmony remote.

            I hit the TV button and it turns on the cable box, turns on the tv, and sets the tv to the appropriate input, it can just as easily work with a port multiplier as long as it uses a remote.

            • Or another function you need to add to a Harmony remote.

              One could buy a traditional Apple TV box and a port multiplier for the price of a Harmony remote. I have never seen a Harmony remote used in any of the households I've been in.

              • One could buy a traditional Apple TV box and a port multiplier for the price of a Harmony remote. I have never seen a Harmony remote used in any of the households I've been in.

                So where exactly can you find an Apple TV box and a port multiplier for $79.99 ?

                http://www.logitech.com/en-us/remotes/universal-remotes/devices/6621 [logitech.com]

                There are many harmony remotes, I'm giving the price for the one I have. The pricing starts at $29.99 for the 300 and goes up to $349.99 for the 1100.

                • My fault; I just saw a bunch of the $109 to $199 models when I Googled harmony remote. But does, say, a Harmony 300 come with a warranty that it'll have a particular device's codes built into it?
      • Why would you have so many other devices, when the AppleTV will do all of that and more? You only need one port when you have an AppleTV!

        (please don't take this post seriously, I just wondered what it would be like if I worked for Apple marketing.)

      • by jedidiah (1196)

        An Apple branded TV won't solve that problem.

        It will just cost more money today and then even more money tomorrow when it becomes obsolete and isn't supported anymore.

        That's the problem with "smart" TVs generally.

  • by GerbilSoft (761537) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:58AM (#39994123)
    The one consistent thing I've seen with the vast majority of HDTVs is that many of them cannot show a basic computer image without messing up the display in some way. For example, many "1080p" HDTVs arbitrarily limit the VGA input to 1024x768, and there's also models that arbitrarily subsample input to 4:2:2, which introduces color fringing. (Just try using any sort of program that displays text on that!) Virtually none of the displays I've used that are marketed as standard monitors have these issues.

    What I'm wondering is if Apple's "HDTV" will actually be usable as a standard monitor, or if they'll use the same garbage decoders found in the rest of the dime-a-dozen displays. If they do use a standard monitor decoder instead of garbage, then it might actually be worth a purchase, regardless of the brand name or extra iOS functionality. (Obviously it would need to actually support various inputs like VGA, YPbPr, etc; a Thunderbolt-only HDTV is kinda useless.)
    • Especially with plasma displays, the science is more complicated than "spray this buffer of cathodes onto a screen". Some of it has to do with copy protection mechanisms, too. But essentially, if you don't display at native resolution, the scaling artifacts would be unacceptable, so they only use native resolution
    • by h4rr4r (612664)

      Why use the VGA input at all?

      I hook my computer up to my LCD TV using HDMI and have none of these problems.

      • I have a ThinkPad T60p, which only has VGA on the base unit. I also use VGA with most of my other electronic devices, since VGA doesn't have the cable length issues that DVI and HDMI have.

        I have also seen these issues on the same TVs using HDMI/DVI, especially broken EDIDs. It's not just limited to the VGA decoder, and quite honestly, if a 2012 HDTV can't match the VGA decoding capabilities of a 2000 PC LCD (Dell 1701FP), something's wrong with it.
    • This is Apple. The likelihood of them supporting VGA as standard is virtually nil. The last time I had a Mac with VGA output built in was in the '90s. Everything since then has used one of their adapters.

    • by AmiMoJo (196126)

      The main thing that messes up computer displays on HDTVs is edge enhancement. Turn that off and everything will look nice again, unless your TV really is a POS.

      • by Entropius (188861)

        "Edge enhancement" i.e. oversharpening makes everything look shitty, whether it's a movie or a baseball game or a computer display. I imagine that whoever is producing broadcast signals sharpens them exactly how much they need to sharpen them on their own, and is probably pretty annoyed to see GIANT HALOS around everything on people's tv's.

    • by gl4ss (559668)

      practically all new full-hd or hd-ready screens let you drive them at the native resolution and you'd be a fool not to. practically all of them let you turn off enhancements too(craptamenhacements.. ).

      • I did use the native resolution when running tests on HDTVs. The 1024x768 thing was an issue with some older models that either had broken EDIDs, only exposed 1024x768 on the EDID, or claimed that any resolution other than 1024x768 was "out of range". (Also "720p" plasma screens that actually have a 1024x768 native resolution due to non-square pixels.)

        Turning off "enhancements" helps a bit, but still nowhere near a PC monitor. As an example, I tested a 46" Sony Bravia a while ago (don't remember the model
      • Most of them do not get around the 4:2:2 chroma subsampling though. That's basically where your TV only displays half of the proper color resolution. It will look fine for the most part (for example, black text on a white background will look fine,) but you'll notice some colors tend to smudge with other colors. It gets particularly bad when you try to calibrate it on a site like lagom.nl, whereas if it doesn't do 4:4:4 chroma subsampling, you won't even pass half of the tests on that page, and it's basical

    • Samsung TV's can get around the 4:2:2 problem if you set them to PC mode and use HDMI input 1. I use a Samsung 46" TV as my computer monitor. I'm really picky about details too, but it gets it right.

  • Excellent! (Score:4, Funny)

    by AntEater (16627) on Monday May 14, 2012 @09:58AM (#39994129) Homepage

    I've been axiously waiting for someone to put an affordable, technolgically advanced TV out on the market that will respect the user's freedom.

    • by P-niiice (1703362)
      ...and you're looking to Apple?
      • Nope, he means as soon Apple comes out with one, everyone else would want to be on the market too. Google & Microsoft would come up with one. Hopefully they would be open.

    • And I've been looking forward to replacing my obsolete television every couple of years.

  • download caps will kill this like the Sony online idea.

  • Cost doesn't matter. Size doesn't matter.

    If Apple pushes this with a billion dollar ad campaign, saying it's revolutionary and make people feel like losers if they don't have one, it will sell like hot cakes.

    I know several families who are struggling to make ends meet, yet mom and dad sport an iphones with data plans, kids have ipods and ipads. It's sad, but true.

     

  • by msobkow (48369) on Monday May 14, 2012 @10:04AM (#39994181) Homepage Journal

    Once upon a time, Apple Computers signed an agreement with Apple Records (of Beatles fame) that allowed them to use the Apple name provided they stayed out of the music business. Then along came iTunes, and the "Computer" was dropped from the name. I just wonder how much they paid the old Apple Records company for the right to broaden their markets?

    Yeah, it's off topic. :)

  • CEO of Apple's main hardware supplier Foxconn

    will be manufactured by a 50-50 joint venture between Foxconn and the Japanese manufacturer Sharp

    I'm willing to bet one of these facts is about to change.
    Either this CEO is going to get canned, or Apple will be giving that 50% to someone else.

  • by ModelX (182441) on Monday May 14, 2012 @10:11AM (#39994247)

    My telco offers IPTV box with a load of features but a really lousy interface. There's also a tablet app available that will show most of the channels but the interface is basically select one channel from a list and watch it. With so many people having tablets around it makes so much sense to integrate with TVs and make a tablet somewhat like a secondary screen and a much better remote. Apple has everything in place to make such a TV and a lot of space to innovate. Ipads and Iphones can become personal touch interfaces for the apps running on TV. I can think of dozens of functions that can be made easier and more intuitive with such a setup. Plus they can afford to use a higher-powered CPU/GPU in the TV making it more suitable for console-like software.

    • Maybe. I have a family of iDevices, all of which can throw content onto my TVs via airplay/AppleTV pucks. We rarely do that. Having a dedicated remote in the room that's always with the TV is nice, as is a common front end.

      Of course, my ATVs are jailbroken and run Plex to access all of our server-based movie storage (DVD/BR rips) and tv content (via sickbeard). Maybe if I didn't have that I'd wish for a phone interface, but probably not.

  • If Apple created a TV it would be awesome and terrible.

    Apple has the ability to make things that seem "futuristic" just by incorporating the technologies that everyone begs and pleads to be put into devices, but companies never do. Ex: Voice recognition is a killer app in the living room. The ability to say "Play the next episode of " without picking-up a remote, or running the Netflix/Hulu/DVR app, would be great. A tiny bit of intelligence would be good too: "Play the next episode of that is not a mul

    • by jedidiah (1196)

      You've got to get the basic data processing right before any of the voice controlled hype means anything.

      Can ANY Apple interface manage what you are asking of it now? Using ANY available input?

      3rd parties are great sometimes in how they can provide a little bit of creative chaos so that useful new features get developed. You don't have to wait for the local monopoly to finally get interested.

    • by MobyDisk (75490)

      Thanks Slashdot for eliminating everything I had in angle brackets. Now the body of the post makes no sense. [grumble]

    • by Algae_94 (2017070)
      I see you lamenting the lack of angle brackets in your post, so I don't know if you were serious or not about all your points.

      If Apple does put voice recognition in a TV set, it will be typical that most people will think they are an amazing innovator, even though there are voice recognition TVs available now. Samsung Smart TV [samsung.com]
  • But would it be 50/50? Foxconn just bought a 50% stake in Sharp’s LCD display manufacturing plant. So is it 50/50 with Sharp or with the LCD Plant - in which case it would be more like 75% / 25%.

  • If true, Foxconn is not getting the next contract for it. Loose lips sink ships, Terry. Learn to keep your pie hole shut.

  • Honestly the iTV is a dumb idea. Now an iSight camera that plugs into the AppleTV3 to give you face time at home on your TV... That's a smart idea.

    The TV market is so saturated with a fight for the lowest price, I cant see apple make any inroads at all.

  • It has to be more than tech. I'm thinking there's some sort of maybe revolutionary probably evolutionary content deal.

    How about this: the Apple functionality is still a little AppleTV-like box that unplugs from the back of then TV so you can upgrade that part of it like people do with their smartphones.

    Maybe implement all the functions in reprogrammable FPGAs so you can do "hardware" updates by just reflashing the configuration PROMs.

  • according to the Terry Gou, CEO of Apple's main hardware supplier Foxconn, in a brief interview with the newspaper China Daily.

    The same executive that is proud to treat his workers like animals? Sounds like it.

    The newspaper reports that the device will feature 'aluminum construction, Siri, and FaceTime video calling' and will be manufactured by a 50-50 joint venture between Foxconn and the Japanese manufacturer Sharp;

    This means that it'll have the Sharp name, but the shoddiness that is the hallmark of Chinese hardware (but not of Japanese hardware). It'll be OK since Apple throws the label on it and thus makes it immune from criticism. Any hardware failures will be excused while evidence of it will be considered modbomb worthy.

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