Apple is afraid of competing with Samsung in this one area

Apple TV Tim CookKevork Djansezian / Getty ImagesApple CEO Tim Cook talks about Apple TV

Despite superstar investor Carl Icahn’s best guess, Apple gave up on any plans to make its own television as long ago as last year, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

In an open letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook today, Icahn wrote that he expects an Apple car and an Apple television — two rumoured projects which have never been officially confirmed or announced by Apple — to hit the market next year.

But while the jury’s still out on any Apple car, that report indicates that Apple’s television dreams may have come to an end a year ago, after over a decade of internal research and development.

Basically, Apple reportedly found the higher-end television market to be way too competitive to go head-to-head with the likes of Samsung.

The rumours held that the Apple television would sport an insanely high video resolution (four times as many pixels as HDTVs), and that it would include cameras and sensors to make video calls straight from the set. In his letter, citing “many years of rumours, Icahn said that he assumed it would ship in 55″ and 65” models.

But ultimately, Apple decided that nothing they could come up with was good enough to really make a splash in the market, especially given the fact that high-resolution TVs are only going down in price, the Journal reports.

It’s a shame, because Apple had reportedly been working on plenty of crazy ideas, including a transparent pane of glass that would use lasers to project the TV image. But on that idea in particular, the prototype had poor image quality and worse power efficiency.

Apple hasn’t given up on TV entirely: The rumour is still that we’ll see a new Apple TV console before the year’s out, with a new design and remote control. And Apple is still working with partners like HBO to build an online television service.

Just don’t hold your breath waiting for a big-screen Apple television.

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