Over the years since Apple’s efforts to build its own TV first surfaced, the company has famously met with resistance from content companies anxious about losing out in the shift to digital distribution. That is, except for Time Warner, whose CEO Jeff Bewkes apparently wants to buy one of the "Designed in California" sets. Speaking at Business Insider’s Ignition conference, Bewkes said, "I hope they do [make a TV]… Apple is a great device company." He further lauded Apple for adding differentiation to product categorizes that had become commoditized. Later, the CEO added that "they bring good interface and navigation skills," which he believes could help solve fundamental problems with the TV business, like having to sort through the 200 channels available on their cable boxes.
Time Warner is the second-largest media conglomerate in the world behind only The Walt Disney Company
While this might not be a big deal coming from another CEO, Time Warner is the second-largest media conglomerate in the world behind only The Walt Disney Company; owning New Line Cinema, HBO, TBS, Warner Bros., CNN, Cartoon Network, and other properties. Coincidentally, out of US cable companies, Apple is also rumored to be farthest along in talks with Time Warner Cable, although that company has been independent of Time Warner since 2009.
Demand for a hypothetical iTV is practically a given, even without a large number of content partners to start. So far, though, Apple has chosen to hold out until it can get others on board. For his own part, Bewkes has shown openness to shifting trends in distribution, while many in the industry have been conservative about straying too far from traditional business models. Earlier this month, he downplayed the threat that cord-cutters played to cable companies, arguing that the true value of cable and internet services has gone up thanks to more channels and faster speeds.