Topeka Capital's Brian White went on the road, visiting the China-Taiwan tech supply chain to glean some intelligence on what Apple will launch in the coming months, and he found the "iRing."
In his latest research note, issued today, the analyst reaffirmed his prediction that Apple will introduce a 60-inch iTV system in the later part of 2013 for between $1,500 and $2,500, depending on configuration and accessories. He added that it would include an iRing, a small device placed on the finger that serves as a navigational pointer, taking over some of the functionality of a traditional remote control.
He also predicted that the iTV system will come with optional iPad-like "mini iTV" screens for viewing TV content as well as other applications, such as home security and video conferencing. White wrote:
Essentially, we believe the "mini iTV" screens will be able to capture content from the 60-inch "iTV" across a distance of up to 200 meters, allowing a user to view "iTV" content in the kitchen, washroom, garage, bedroom, backyard, etc. We believe Apple will offer one "mini iTV" per "iTV" but package options will include up to four screens (i.e., one screen is part of the standard package and pay extra for each additional).
White also believes that the rumored iWatch, in addition to the now rumored iRing, will be integral to the iTV system."The interaction between 'iTV' and making phone calls will be an important feature of this experience, while the 'iWatch' and 'iRing' will provide increased mobility around the home, supplanting the need to carry a smartphone around the house," he wrote.
White, who set a 12-month price target for Apple of $1,111 last year, cut it to $888 in January 2013. At midday, Apple was up 3 percent to $432.82.
Apple has been silent on any plans for a TV product. "There's a lot we can contribute in this space, so we can continue to pull the string and see where it leads us,"during the company's first-quarter earnings call in January.