One of this week’s wackier Apple rumours is that the company is supposedly working with Samsung on some sort of television project.
What’s that all about?
We do NOT expect some sort of Samsung-Apple co-branded TV any time soon, or any sort of Samsung TV running an Apple operating system.
If Apple’s going to make a TV, it’s probably going to do everything itself. That’s how Apple makes money.
The most likely answer we can think of — if there’s any element of truth to the rumours — is that Samsung could potentially be building TVs that support Apple’s AirPlay technology built-in. This would allow you to stream video, music, photos, and apps straight from your iPad or iPhone to your TV.
AirPlay is already available for licensing through a company called Bridgeco, and has already been announced for audio gadgets. It’s only a matter of time until it’s available for video gadgets beyond the Apple TV set-top box.
A consumer electronics industry executive estimates that AirPlay could add $50 to $75 to the retail price of a TV, which seems within reason. (And less than the $100 we had previously heard and had originally written here.) And maybe Samsung has figured out a way to make it even cheaper.
How would Apple gain from this? Beyond whatever licence fees it gets, by selling more iPhones, iPod touches, and iPads.
Beyond that, there’s also the potential that Apple and Samsung are just teaming up for TV components for an Apple television that could launch sometime in the future. Apple has a big display contract with LG, but it still works with Samsung for a lot of other components, so maybe it’s sourcing TV stuff from Samsung.
Either way, we expect to hear more about the next steps for Apple TV sometime by the end of September.
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