Apple Likely To Launch HDTV Set Soon Says Analyst

Gene Munster, the unofficial Apple oracle from analyst firm Piper Jaffray, reckons that the soon to be released Apple iTV may well be the company's first step towards a full blown attack on the $35 billion television market.

Apple Insider writes about a note that Munster sent to investors where he voices his belief in Apple's plans to launch a "connected HDTV" in the next two to four years as it looks to take over the lounge, which means that we could see an Apple TV set as early as 2012.

The new iTV set top box, which would be an integral part of the plan, is rumoured to come with the internal components of the iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch with a limited amount of flash memory and no battery.

It will however have access to the App store, run on iOS and potentially rely on the new data centre that Apple is building in North Carolina, one which may be the foundation of a cloud-based iTunes streaming powerhouse.

An interesting scenario would be one where the iTV would be integrated in the Apple Television and sold for $1999 with iTunes monthly pass worth up to $90 per month.

The Apple TV package could effectively replace a Blu-ray player, a games console, the need for cables and audio receiver, a DVR and a satellite/cable subscription.