U.S. Cable Companies Reportedly Assessing Potential Infrastructure Impact of 'Imminent' Apple TV Product
Barron's reports on a new research note from Jefferies & Co. analyst James Kisner noting that he believes the launch of an unspecified Apple television product (presumably either a new set-top box or a connected television) is "imminent". Kisner's belief comes from information he has received indicating that at least one major U.S. cable company is assessing the potential impact on its network infrastructure from such a device.
Our discussions with industry contacts suggest that at least one major N. American MSO is working to estimate how much additional capacity may be needed for a new Apple device on their broadband data network. We believe this potentially suggests an imminent launch of the Apple TV, a positive development for ARRIS, who is directly exposed to data traffic growth from incremental IP video streams on cable networks
Kisner's research note is actually addressing the impact on ARRIS, a major communications technology that handles much of the network infrastructure for U.S. cable companies, most notably Comcast. Kisner believes that a forthcoming Apple television product would bode well for ARRIS, as it would force cable companies to increase their network capacity to handle such demands as on-demand HD streams from users of the new Apple product.
Rumors of an Apple television set peaked approximately a year ago with Steve Jobs having briefly addressed the topic for Walter Isaacson's authorized biography published shortly after Jobs' death. At the time, follow-up rumors suggested that the set could be announced in late 2012 ahead of an early 2013 launch, but talk of such a product has quieted down in recent months amid reports of difficult content negotiations.