Analyst sees shiny Apple TV set by 2011

Posted by Aharon Etengoff

San Francisco (CA) - A senior analyst at Piper Jaffray has opined that Apple could offer a full-fledged television set as early as 2011. The device is expected to feature advanced media functions and would be capable of synchronizing with iPods, iPhones and Mac computers.

"The argument that Apple will not enter the television market because prices have declined by approximately 70 percent in the past three years is a similar argument used to conclude Apple would not enter the cell phone market, given phones had seen similar price declines," Gene Munster wrote in a memo to investors obtained by CNN. "The bottom line, 10 million HDTV's sold in the US a year is a real market, and if history repeats itself, Apple will find a way to compete in a commoditized market with a premium priced product."

Apple TV set

Munster also noted that Club Cupertino has sold more than 48 million iPhones and iPod Touches that could theoretically be used as TV remotes or interactive TV game controllers.

"Such a device would command a premium among a competitive field of budget TVs; we believe Apple could differentiate itself with software that makes home entertainment simple and solves a pain point for consumers."

Munster's analysis is apparently based on a recent statement by COO Tim Cook, who vowed to continue investing in Apple TV due to a "fundamental" belief that there was "something there for [Apple] in the future."