Apple Shares Surge to New High Amid iPad, TV Rumors

Apple Must Tell U.K. Consumers Samsung Tablet Not iPad Clone

Apple's global legal battle against Samsung's Galaxy tablets was dealt a blow in the U.K. this week when a judge ordered Apple to inform consumers on its U.K. web site and in British newspapers that Samsung did not copy the tech giant's designs for the iPad in its own tablet device.

Mini iPad could hit stores by October, while Apple TV set, set-top box may also be in works.

Apple shares hit an all-time closing high of $648.11 on Friday, giving the company a market capitalization of $608 billion, more than the combined worth of Comcast, Disney, News Corp., Time Warner, Viacom, CBS, Sony and Facebook -- with about $250 billion to spare.

Enthusiasm for the stock, which rose 2 percent Friday, was attributed to rumors that the company is working on a smaller version of its wildly popular iPad, as well as a new iPhone and a beefed-up Apple TV – or even a different television product, or two, entirely.

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that Apple is in talks with U.S. cable operators, hoping to convince them it would be in their best interest to adopt set-top boxes made or powered by Apple.

“Enabling Apple and others to innovate on the front-end of the cable television interface should enable cable operators to reverse market share losses over the past several years to satellite and RBOCs, especially given consumer love of the Apple brand/products (as opposed to negative views of their MVPD providers),” BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield wrote Thursday.

A recent report from Jefferies & Co. analyst Peter Misek indicated that a mini iPad could go on sale by October and some sort of new TV product – like an Apple television set -- could be available in 2013.

Misek also raised by $100 his price target on Apple to $900 per share.

Apple shipped 17 million iPads in the second quarter, and Misek predicts it could sell 8 million mini iPads at $300 apiece in the three-month period ending in December, according to Bloomberg.