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Rumor: Apple Smart TV prototype in the works

Shortly after it was reported that Apple is strongly considering licensing its AirPlay technology to fully stream digital content to compatible TVs, comes the possibility that the Cupterino company will be creating its own smart TV. Morgan Stanley investors are being told that Apple is “working on a Smart TV prototype,” according to Apple Insider. The analyst also noted it would include “TV/Video content, gaming, DVR, as well as other features like apps and FaceTime into one product.”

For what it’s worth, Forbes notes that the analyst in question, Katy Huberty, has been unsuccessful when it comes to her predictions for Apple quarterly earnings. It probably didn’t need to be said, but it was also mentioned that this would be “the next new product category” for Apple and rake in billions of dollars for the company and a one percent share of the TV market by 2013.

It all makes too much sense. Immediately after we heard that Apple would be expanding AirPlay to include more than audio streaming, the wheels started turning. Apple isn’t traditionally keen on outside manufacturers using its technology, and it seems safe to assume that the new capabilities will be offered to a limited set of TV makers. This, in turn, would endow a possible Apple Smart TV with technology that most competing smart TVs don’t include.

Product unity also makes sense: Apple offers media streaming with its set-top device, but combining all of the content Apple hosts into its own branded television is the natural next step. Earlier this year, there was also the mention that in the long term, Apple had “more ambitions in the living room,” which could indicate that a Apple TV was only the beginning.

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