BusinessWeek: video-ready Apple iPod won’t be about watching movies on the go

“A video-ready iPod won’t be about watching movies on the go. Laptop computers and portable DVD players already have that niche wrapped up pretty well. But the iPod could easily morph into a video-storage platform that connects to a TV set,” Arik Hesseldahl writes for BusinessWeek. “The connection for an AV cable is already available on the back of the iPod docking station, but right now it only supports the display of still photos and slide shows with customized soundtracks. A few changes to the iPod’s insides — notably a new chip from PortalPlayer — would allow a video connection.”

Hesseldahl writes, “Sure you could build a slightly bigger screen into an iPod and play videos on it, but portable media centers from companies such as Creative Labs and Archos already do that, and they’ve failed to get much traction with consumers. Why watch a movie on a handheld gadget when you can see it on your plasma TV at home? “

“There were a lot of naysayers when Apple launched its music store, and indeed, many dismissed the first iPod. The same thing is true of digital video, which is about due for the same kind of bold shock to its collective consciousness that Apple delivered to the music industry when it launched iTunes in 2003. An iPod that plays home movies and downloads video podcasts might be a good start. And that would likely nudge the motion picture industry along. Soon enough, an online video store — complete with a digital rights management framework — would follow,” Hesseldahl writes. “If Apple doesn’t do it, someone else will. But my money is on Apple — and Jobs. Apple is the only company that can do this right. And in fact, the movie industry needs some help in finding its way in the digital world. Apple has been this way before with music. It can do it again with video, and change the entertainment world once again.”

Full article here.

Related articles:
Apple’s iTunes 5 provides hints of future iTunes Video Store – September 13, 2005
Microsoft, Texas Instruments reps expect Apple ‘iPod video’ by end of year – August 16, 2005
Creative debuts US$399 video-capable 30GB music player – August 03, 2005
The next big thing? Apple’s iTunes 4.9 supports Video Podcasts (with example) – July 29, 2005
BusinessWeek: Think Apple’s developing ‘Video iPod?’ – Think Different – July 27, 2005
Apple’s ‘pure genius’ will soon make iTunes’ portal the ‘number one destination on the Internet’ – July 26, 2005
Video iPod? Does The Wall Street Journal have a ‘Deep Throat’ inside Apple Computer? – July 25, 2005
Cringely: Apple’s soon-to-come ‘iVideo’ movie download service very important to Intel – July 23, 2005
Selling music videos on Apple’s iTunes makes economic sense – July 19, 2005
Report: Disney considers teaming with Apple to deliver iPod video content – July 19, 2005
Ars Technica peeks at Apple’s portable video plans – July 18, 2005
More info about Apple’s reported iPod+iTunes video talks – July 18, 2005
WSJ: Apple in video iTunes talks, may unveil video iPod by September – July 18, 2005
Cringely: Apple working on HD movie download service and Video iPod – July 15, 2005
Cringley: Apple and Intel to merge; Steve Jobs finally beats Bill Gates – June 09, 2005
Apple’s shift to Intel really all about Hollywood, owning the living room, and Transitive – June 05, 2005
Cringely: This week changed the world of high tech forever – May 13, 2005
Cringely: Apple prepping Video iTunes, Video iPod, and setting stage for iPod clones – May 06, 2005

30 Comments

  1. I’ve been predicting this for a while. The video part is about taking videos with you to watch on tvs and monitors, not watching on a 3 inch screen. Besides I still cant understand how people don’t understand the part about passive vs active activities.

    Listening to music is passive, you do other stuff while you listen. Watching movies are active. It requires all your attention. For this reason alone having a video iPod isn’t that big of a deal. If people want to watch video, they’ll go home and watch when they have time and can devote their attention. Or perhaps they will take their movies colection to someone else’s house to watch, say, on a video iPod.

  2. A video iPod has to be more than just about watching Porky’s Revenge or Saturday Night Fever on a commute. If the product happens, the functionality has to have other angles than just carrying around stuff. The stuff it carries has to have emotional weight, just like the iPod’s “soundtrack for your life” does– something most don’t initially think of when thinking about video. Video is impersonal to a large degree, unless it’s good enhough to be engaging. Even then, it’s a passive experience because we watch someone else’s interpretation of something or their ideas. For video iPods to work like the music iPod does, it has to somehow be revolutionary.

    I don’t know what that is exactly, but looking at the current iPod, ease of use and capacity size revolutionized the way people listen to music. Sudeenly, your life IS your music, whenever, wherever. The iPod expanded your options unlike anything before. In the future, will video content get SO personalized that people have MANY more choices in terms of what they watch. Not only could we record shows, but really fill our watching with quasi-professional videocasts that are tailored to very specific tastes? If a video iPod happens, this is my bet for the direction of things.

  3. Ok, here’s an idea that might be way out there.

    1) Apple introduces a new Mac mini that is even slimmer than the current model (using flash drives)

    2) These flash drives are removable and can connect to the vPod.

    3) The vPod allows you to connect to a TV. (in HDTV mode?)

    4) Apple releases video glasses where they have small screens for people wanting to commute and watch their shows.

    5) The whole iPod video is somehow tied into “the year of HDTV”

    6) The world once again produces a collective gasp with Apple’s innovation and Dell screems because Apple enters the video entertainment area.

  4. Didn’t Jobs himself say no one wants to watch video on a small screen (one that would be possible to put on a iPod)

    I see a iTunes Video store coming long before a video iPod.

    Imagine just buy a Seinfeld episode for $3.99 and watching it on your computer or streaming it to your TV in the living room via the “New Airport Express”

  5. “I’ve been predicting this for a while. The video part is about taking videos with you to watch on tvs and monitors, not watching on a 3 inch screen. Besides I still cant understand how people don’t understand the part about passive vs active activities.

    Listening to music is passive, you do other stuff while you listen. Watching movies are active. It requires all your attention. For this reason alone having a video iPod isn’t that big of a deal. If people want to watch video, they’ll go home and watch when they have time and can devote their attention. Or perhaps they will take their movies colection to someone else’s house to watch, say, on a video iPod.”

    i prefer to think of it the other way round, ie one is active whilst listening to music doing something, whilst watching a video is more often than not an excuse to do nothing (and with most of the films out there this includes evening thinking).

    basically music enhances activity whilst video gives you an excuse to have none…… pedantic perhaps………

  6. What if Apple introduces a 7″ monitor, that can be easily mounted inside a car. The iPod video connects to the monitor and also charges the iPod video and provide connection to car stereo. Apple can also modify their monitors, so they too have the iPod connector which provide connection to the computer (iTune) and video playback on monitor. May be TV manufactures will start supporting such connections too.

  7. I run a dance company, right now I bring my laptop to rehersals so that we can watch our last rehersal, or watch an old piece that we are working on in imovie. If i could export my imovie to an ipod instead, then play it on a tv, it would be easer to bring that then my laptop.

  8. The iPod should be the storage for the movies, not the display.

    Try this on for size:
    We need a thin HiFi box that goes permanently in the HiFi cabinet with a slot ready to accept my iPod or Nano. I download music, music videos and movies while attached to my Mac, undock it from my Mac, dock it into my (or my friend’s) iHiFi (not very catchy) and watch the movie just like a DVD. No messy cables. Would this work?

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