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Apple TV won't debut until late 2013, says analyst

The new TV won't launch until next November, analyst Gene Munster says in a revision of his previous prediction.


Apple could finally unveil its long-awaited TV in time for the holiday-shopping season, but not this year's season.

In an investors note out today, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster said he believes Apple will kick off the TV in November 2013. The new forecast is a change from Munster's previous report in which he projected that Apple would announce the TV next month and ship it next year.

If and when if ever debuts, the new TV would likely retail for $1,500 to $2,000 and would offer screen sizes from 42 inches to 55 inches, according to Munster. The analyst also shared a few other thoughts about the device.

"We expect the beauty of the design to be a feature, but the most important feature will be the ability to use the TV as the main interface for the living room across multiple devices," Munster said. "We believe the TV will include Siri and FaceTime. The biggest item unlikely to come with the TV will be unbundled channels."

Apple watchers and curious consumers have been waiting for Apple to announce its much-anticipated TV.

Based on "rumblings" from industry contacts, Jefferies & Co. analyst James Kisner said last week that he believes a launch of the Apple TV is "imminent."

But Apple may be treading cautiously.

Sales of TV sets continue to slump, forcing manufacturers to lower their prices. An Apple TV priced as high as $2,000 could find difficulty gaining traction. And the analyst's belief that "unbundled channels" won't be part of the picture means buyers would have to subscribe to a package of channels. That's the same reason some people are cutting the cord from their cable providers.

Still, it's never a safe bet to underestimate Apple, and the company is certainly aware of the challenges it faces.