×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Apple Hires Cable Guy to Work on Mystery Project

CableLabs exec Jean-François Mulé joins technology giant as engineering director

Apple has hired longtime cable engineering exec Jean-François Mulé — whose background includes developing TV apps and Internet voice and video technologies — to do… something.

Mulé, previously senior VP of technology development at the operator-owned CableLabs consortium, is now director of engineering at Apple. “Challenged, inspired and part of something big,” Mulé writes cryptically in a description of the Apple gig on his LinkedIn profile.

Apple, once seen as a disruptive challenger to cable TV, has been building ties to the pay TV biz. The company has been adding cable networks’ TV Everywhere video services to the Apple TV set-top, while it’s also reportedly working with Time Warner Cable to bring the cable operator’s TWC TV app to the device.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has referred vaguely to a “grand vision” for television, but the company has been tight-lipped about plans so as not to tip off competitors. Wall Street has been expecting a bigger foray by Apple into the living room beyond the $99 hockey-puck-size set-top, including potentially an integrated TV set.

SEE ALSO: Apple TV Keeps Bolstering Pay TV’s Business Model

As usual, Apple is keeping mum on what, exactly, Mulé will be doing at the tech giant. News of his move to Apple was first reported by Multichannel News.

Mulé in 2011 led the formation of CableLabs’ Bay Area office, an outpost for the R&D group’s Denver headquarters to collaborate with Silicon Valley firms. In that role, he led development of a Wi-Fi app designed to connect users to the best possible hotspot. From 2005 to 2011 he ran his own consulting firm, IPcera, focused on developing real-time Internet communication and mobile apps, and prior to that worked at CableLabs in various roles.

This summer, Apple hired Pete Distad, formerly Hulu’s head of marketing and distribution, as VP of product marketing. While Apple confirmed he had joined the company, it wouldn’t provide details on what Distad is doing.

SEE ALSO: Apple Set-Tops Are Groundwork for ‘Grand Vision’ in TV, CEO Says

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • U.K. Producer Barcroft Studios Sold to

    U.K.-Based Producer Barcroft Studios Sold to Future in $30 Million Deal

    Barcroft Studios has been bought by Future in a £23.5 million ($30.1 million) deal. The U.K.-based production outfit specializes in factual fare for channels and platforms, and its own branded channels on the likes of YouTube. Future is a U.K.-listed print and online publishing and events business. Sam Barcroft will stay on as CEO at [...]

  • Tye Sheridan

    Tye Sheridan Starring in Survival Thriller 'Wireless' From Steven Soderbergh for Quibi

    Quibi has ordered another show with notable Hollywood talent attached: scripted series “Wireless” starring Tye Sheridan with Steven Soderbergh on board as executive producer. In the made-for-mobile-screens thriller, a smartphone has a central role. Sheridan (“Ready Player One,” “X-Men: Apocalypse”) plays a self-obsessed college student who is stranded in the Colorado mountains after he crashes [...]

  • Instagram

    Instagram Testing Hidden Like Counts Globally

    Like counts will be disappearing from Instagram all over the world starting this week: The Facebook-owned photo sharing service is extending its test of hiding like counts to all of its territories, Techcrunch was first to report Thursday morning. Instagram began hiding like counts for a subset of its users in Canada this spring, and [...]

  • Ted Sarandos - Netflix

    Ted Sarandos Says Disney Plus Launch Changes 'Nothing' for Netflix

    Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos claims he’s not getting distracted by huge competitors — like Disney — rumbling into the company’s streaming turf. The exec was asked what has changed for Netflix with the Nov. 12 launch of Disney Plus, which the Mouse House boasted as having signed up over 10 million users so [...]

  • Game Awards OrchestraThe Game Awards, Show,

    Game Awards 2019 to Play on 53 Cinemark Screens Alongside 'Jumanji: The Next Level'

    This year’s Game Awards, recognizing the top video games, creators and esports of 2019, is coming to the silver screen. In a three-way partnership, the Game Awards, Cinemark Theatres and Sony Pictures are teaming on a superticket program pairing the Dec. 12 live simulcast of the 2019 Game Awards in 53 Cinemark locations with a [...]

  • Lilly Burns Tony Hernandez

    Jax Media Soars by Amplifying Unique Voices of Auteur TV

    Jax Media has emerged during the past few years as one of television’s busiest and buzziest production companies. The New York-based company headed by four partners — Tony Hernandez, Lilly Burns, John Skidmore and Brooke Posch — has an enviable track record of scouting new voices and executing stylish shows on a less-than-stratospheric budgets. The [...]

  • Variety Digital New Leaders

    Execs From Endeavor Audio, Group Nine Among Those Leading the Way in Digital

    Every year, Variety seeks to identify the next generation of leaders in the entertainment business, looking for representatives in the creative community, film, TV, music and digital. This year’s group has a heavy New York focus: We selected executives from forward thinking companies such as Spotify, Group Nine and Endeavor Audio, as well as writers [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content