Apple continues to work toward fulfilling the vision of the company’s recently deceased founder to create a television set that could revolutionize the medium, Bloomberg reports.
The project has been turned over to Jeff Robbin, who helped develop the iPod and the iTunes media store, the report says, citing sources with knowledge of the project. The sources refused to be identified.
The involvement of Robbin is an indication that Apple intends to push aggressively into television in an effort to emulate its leadership in smartphones and tablets, the story reports. The move into TV was integral to the plans of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who died Oct. 5.
While Apple’s plans are unconfirmed, the release of a set could be as close as a year away, the report says.
The story reports: “Jobs told biographer Walter Isaacson that he had ‘finally cracked’ how to build an integrated TV with a simple user interface that would wirelessly synchronize content with Apple’s other devices.”
Apple has not gone public with plans to develop a TV set, but Jobs’ vision is revealed in Isaacson’s biography, “Steve Jobs,” which was released Monday.
In the book, Jobs tells Isaacson of the TV project: “It will have the simplest user interface you could imagine.”
Apple declined comment for the story, Bloomberg reports, noting that it is unclear whether Apple will eventually release an actual TV set. The company’s TV initiative up till now has been focused on Apple TV, an add-on for TV sets that enables iTunes, Netflix and YouTube, the story notes.
The story adds that Jobs thought of Apple TV as a “hobby,” and not a revenue source.
“That may be changing,” the report says. “Apple has a prototype TV in the works and may introduce a product for sale by late next year or 2013, according to Gene Munster, an analyst with Piper Jaffray Cos. He based that timing on meetings with contacts close to Apple’s suppliers in Asia, industry contacts and Apple’s patent portfolio. Munster said Apple also is investing in manufacturing facilities and securing supplies of LCD screens.”