Apple HDTV features facial recognition, Siri, built-in iSight camera for FaceTime chat, says source

“We have a source who claims to have seen a prototype Apple high-definition television set in action, indicating that Apple is readying the long-awaited device for market,” Leander Kahney reports for Cult of Mac.

“According to our source, who has asked to remain strictly anonymous, the Apple HDTV looks like Apple’s current lineup of LED-backlit Cinema Displays but is ‘much bigger,'” Kahney reports. “It has a built-in iSight camera for making free FaceTime video conference calls. And it has Siri, the iPhone 4S’s voice-activated virtual assistant.”

Kahney reports, “Our source claims to have seen a working prototype of the exact device Steve Jobs was talking about when he said he had ‘cracked TV.'”

Read more, and see an artist’s conception of the device, in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dan K.” for the heads up.]

20 Comments

    1. I am not sure that “leaker” ever existed in the first place. That set of speculated features is beaten to death rumour already, and it does not get any more convincing no matter how many times the media love to rehash it.

      Facial recognition is the funniest nonsense this time, though, as well as “FaceTime” name in relation to TV-viewing distances.

      1. why is facial recognition “nonsense” — iPhone 4S is doing it today. It doesn’t know *who* the face is of but it recognizes there is a face in view.

        1. That relates to “TV-viewing distances” part. Imagine just how good resolution of the camera has to be to be more reliable than your average device. And how much better the software has to be to recognize you even when you lie in the bed, while the most seen part of your face would be nostrils — even if you have a pillow tucked-up under your shoulders.

          1. A combination of face recognition and a zoom lens could fix that possibly… and a nose sock. Being able to use hand gestures on a remote or in the air could be nice too Apple.. do it! 😉

          2. More importantly to me (since I don’t plan on video calling much when watching TV) is two things:

            Price point & Applications fitting for a television are my top concerns. I’d also like to see a revamped menu guide for satellite/cable service. On top of that, the first tv set they produce can’t be Siri in beta form… The tele should have Siri fully functional and apps on day one. If Apple can make a set with a competitive price point to other vendors they will sell tons of them. If they try to instead forget how the atrociously priced Cube fared, they will still sell plenty, but it won’t be as much of an industry shaker as it could be. When I’m looking for televisions it’s all about 1080P and a good price point. Televisions are and always have been a commodity product with not much differentiation like Windows computers currently.

          3. Apple tunes the built-in microphone for a shallow range of expected distances the mouth is likely to be from the microphone. I would totally expect them to do the same thing from a lens perspective. Additionally, watching the iPhone 4S correctly track faces at all orientations (even dog faces!) I don’t think this software algorithm is beyond their ability. I’ve seen amazing facial recognition already in Aperture, and it only has a non-moving object to consider (which gives it a lot less data to work with than a time-based recognition algorithm has available to it).

  1. not sure how much value supposed ‘leaks’ like these are even if real

    For example I bet there were ‘real’ prototypes of iPhones with keyboards, apple netbooks, 7 inch iPads etc. Apple would have built and tested all kinds of prototypes… whether they will really put them into production for market is another thing.

  2. This is by far the most insightful rumor I have ever seen.

    “it looks like apples existing products and predictably has the same features.”

    Thanks captain obvious.

  3. Giant black bezel like an iPad? Don’t think so.
    What library is Siri going to use to suggest viewing? Apple’s movies? Not the most complete library around. I don’t want to pay $4 each time I decide to kill a couple of hours on 30 year old movie. I don’t know. Seems like a lot of potential for disappointment. What’s the upside for Apple?

  4. Wow, get a load of the wide bezel in the mock-up! Apple doesn’t do “retro”. LG, Samsung and Panasonic are all offering HDTVs with bezels as thin as 5mm. Even the commercial Large Format Display I’m looking at is 15mm. And black? Not a chance.

  5. Cracking the TV thing is about:

    1. bringing the multiplicity of sources into a unified simple interface.
    2. bringing content to the user when the user wants it without confronting hime with the source choice mess.
    3. monetizing the distribution so that everyone gets paid without digging deeper into the pockets of the viewer.
    4. no stupid technical frills like 3D glasses or limited viewing angles for 3D content
    5. No 3D TV
    6. No other set top boxes.
    7. commercials that are targeted to the viewer rather than broad based. Don’t advertise sanitary napkins to men, beer to children, etc.
    8. No commercial service for slightly high cost on a per show basis.

      1. Interesting comment Spark. Given the amount of money our corporate overlords spend advertising to children today, what catalyst are you expecting will change it?

  6. Apple is not making a TV. Don’t be sad about that, be glad! Apple will expand the AppleTV with a camera, channel control, etc. They just aren’t going to make the actual TV.

  7. The person is mistaken.
    What has been witnessed was the new iMac with television integration. This will be how Apple can continue to spread it’s desktop platform and enter the living rooms of America as a entertainment unit.

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