Testing for 46" - 55" Apple TVs reportedly underway at Foxconn

Apple TV
The fruit tube

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., a.k.a. Foxconn, is reportedly in the process of testing Apple TVs of a particular size.

Focus Taiwan reported Wednesday that initial tests for the television sets are underway, something the Wall Street Journal actually wrote about last week.

However, a source speaking with the publication said that Apple's sets need flat panels ranging from 46 inches and 55 inches, giving us a solid clue on sizes for Cupertino's living room foray.

According to Focus Taiwan, this size range means Foxconn won't need Sharp to be its exclusive supplier, instead working with other Japanese or Taiwanese manufacturers.

Although it doesn't make an explicit connection, the publication seems to imply Foxconn won't partner with Sharp because an LCD factory run by Sharp focuses on building 60-inch panels instead.

Waiting game

Earlier reports indicated Apple's iTV would come in three sizes, including 32- and 55-inch models. Throw in a 46er and it looks like Apple is aiming for the modest-size TV crowd.

That's definitely a more practical angle than aiming for huge high-def televisions we're going to see hit the market next year, such as Samsung's 85-inch 4K UHD and Westinghouse's 110-inch monster.

Consumer production isn't in the cards for 2012, Focus Taiwan's source said, but some Apple TV-related products could show up at CES 2013 next month, though we won't hold our breath for that.

Focus Taiwan's source indicated Apple-branded TV shipments, when it the project launches, "could be huge."

Although testing almost always leads to production, it still sounds like an iTV is many months from being ready to accept customer orders, so for now, it's really just a waiting game.

Michelle Fitzsimmons

Michelle was previously a news editor at TechRadar, leading consumer tech news and reviews. Michelle is now a Content Strategist at Facebook.  A versatile, highly effective content writer and skilled editor with a keen eye for detail, Michelle is a collaborative problem solver and covered everything from smartwatches and microprocessors to VR and self-driving cars.