updated 02:55 pm EST, Thu January 12, 2012
Samsung Australia denies Apple TV set a threat
The late Steve Jobs' claims that he had "cracked" the TV strategy didn't represent anything new, Samsung's Australian audiovisual director Philip Newton claimed in an interview Thursday. The division leader unusually interpreted Jobs' statements for the Sydney Morning Herald as having referred to "connectivity," not really interface, and so wasn't new. He also equated having a feature at all with having beaten Apple to it, contending that the Samsung 2012 TV lineup was as good because it already had voice and touch.
"It's old news as far as the traditional players are concerned and we have broadened that with... things like voice control and touch control; the remote control for these TVs has a touch pad," Newton said.
He further doubted that anything Apple could make would surprise Samsung, which had a product roadmap out to 2014 and was the market leader for TVs.
The remarks appear to have mostly misinterpreted Jobs' remarks and suggest that Samsung might not fully anticipate Apple's strategy. iCloud integration was only a part of what Jobs mentioned, and rumors have maintained that the "simplest interface you can imagine" alluded to by the Apple co-founder was a reference to Siri voice control. Samsung's 2012 TVs use limited voice commands with specific syntax, not Siri's natural language.
Statements that Samsung wouldn't be caught be surprise could also be considered ironic. The company was caught off-guard by the iPad 2 after making a bad assumption that Apple would take much longer to update its tablet. Within five weeks of showing its original, thicker Galaxy Tab 10.1 design at Mobile World Congress, Samsung had a much slimmer redesign that showed it hadn't anticipated Apple's refresh at all and instead followed the iPad's lead.