Apple will launch a range of HDTV products early next year, analyst Trip Chowdhry of Global Equities Research has predicted.

According to Apple Insider, Chowdry reckons there will be three different models, all with built-in surround sound and based on a brand new processor.

The three models will have different screen sizes and price points, Chowdhry reckons, and will launch around March 2012.

Rumours about an Apple HDTV product are far from new - in March this year Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty claimed Apple was working on a prototype Smart TV with internet connectivity, apps, gaming and PVR functionality.

Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray has referred to a potential HDTV product several times in recent years, reckoning that the connected HDTV would hook up to iTunes.

As far back as October 2008 Jason Calacanis, a former editor of the Silicon Alley Reporter and Macworld UK's own Mark Hattersley predicted that Apple would launch a networked HDTV at some stage in the future.

As for the most recent reports, Chowdhry reckons that an Apple HDTV will aim to reduce clutter in the living room by integrating up to 16 speakers, meaning that it won't need an external sound system. He likened the potential Apple HDTV to Bose's VideoWave.

The processor would be brand-new, he reckons, and based on Apple's acquisition of PA Semi.