Analyst: Apple rewriting media distribution rules, more people will consider switching to Mac now

“When Steve Jobs took the stage here in San Jose today, most people expected him to release a video-based iPod. And indeed he did, but he actually introduced much more. In a sense, he has shown the tech world what it means to create a total consumer eco-system for integrating images, music and video into a digital lifestyle,” Tim Bajarin writes for Technology Pundits.

Bajarin writes, “He demonstrated an iPod with video that sports a 2.5 inch TFT screen that makes it easy to see personal pictures, music videos and even your own movies made on iMovie. In a stroke of genius, he also announced a deal with Disney which will allow you to download full episodes of major ABC hits such as Desperate Housewives, Lost, Night Stalker, That’s So Raven and Suite Life. This alone will cause the Hollywood TV studios to beat a path to Apple’s door to get their offerings on the new iTunes video store as fast as possible. Since Apple uses Fair Play DRM, they can use this new TV iTunes store to show the Movie Moguls their environment is safe since you cannot actually burn DVD’s of the video content, but can download and view them on either a Mac or the iPod Video device to get a great video experience.”

Bajarin writes, “I still doubt a person will watch a full length movie on such a small screen but shorter TV episodes may catch on. However, with this move, Apple is actually showing the Hollywood producers that digital distribution of any content is safe and secure and that Apple gives them a new way to distribute their content to the entire marketplace.”

MacDailyNews Note: iPods can output to any size screen. iMac G5’s (and other Macs) can be and are connected to larger screens for video playback. People don’t have to watch on a small screen unless they’re on-to-go – in an airplane, on a commute, etc. A lot of people today seem to be missing the fact that the video is not limited to iPod or Mac screens. Want to connect a new iMac G5 to another screen? Use Apple’s $19.99 VGA Display Adapter to connect the mini-VGA port on the iMac G5 to any VGA-equipped monitor or external projector for video-mirroring. The VGA cable plugs into the VGA video-out port built into your iMac G5. Or use Apple’s Apple Video Adapter to connect the mini-VGA video output port on your iMac G5 to any S-video or Composite enabled device (TV, VCR, or overhead projector’s S-Video or RCA (composite) cable).

Bajarin continues, “With this new iPod music and video player and the iTunes store that now supports video downloads, Apple is actually re-writing the rules of media distribution. They are creating a complete consumer digital ecosystem that will be very attractive to Mac and PC users alike and this will only make more people think about switching from PC to Mac.”

“The other major announcement, besides some great new thinner iMacs, was the introduction of their new consumer friendly UI called Front Row. It comes with a remote control that looks like an iPod Shuffle and gives them a single consumer UI that now turns a person’s Mac into a complete entertainment system as easy to use as any other product within the overall Mac experience. But Front Row’s UI is so stunning in the way it works with the remote and the way it looks like on the screen that the two together will force the Media Center folks up at Redmond to completely re-think their architecture. Like in the past, Apple’s engineers have outdone themselves by thinking through the entire consumer experience and delivering it in a way that is simple and amazingly easy to use. They have also introduced the powerful concept of a single UI across platforms and devices that will give them a significant edge over the PC based competition for some time,” Bajarin writes.

Full article here.

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Apple’s Front Row with Apple Remote and iMac G5: media center done right – October 12, 2005
Apple introduces new thinner iMac G5 with built-in iSight video camera, ‘Front Row’ media experience – October 12, 2005
Apple releases iTunes 6 with 2,000 music videos, Pixar short films & hit TV shows for $1.99 – October 12, 2005
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23 Comments

  1. Up till now, the entertainment side of Apple really was completely irrelevant to me vs. the Mac.

    This might make me change my mind if I can have decent choices of the tv programs that I could get.

    The more I think about it, THAT is the real problem,

    Where will the content come from? Based upon recent episodic tv, I am not hopeful, but………….

  2. I wish Apple would have introduced a stripped down version of an Xserve with a G5 processor and DVI/HDMI outputs, large HD, and a dual layer super drive bundled with Front Row and a remote. This would have been the ultimate media server. It also would look more appropriate among other AV components and would look great next to some of the upscale, stainless front Sony ES AV receivers.

  3. …of the Beginning.

    A lot of people spend a lot of time waiting in offices, cabs, buses, trains, planes, etc. These would be prime early customers. Notice how many people share snapshots from their digital cameras in break rooms, cafeterias, etc. How about time spent by rugrats in the back seat of cars, vans and SUV’s?

    In the long run, I think the TV on the laptop will be bigger than the video on a dedicated device. Laptops are taking over and people are busier than ever. When you can buy last night’s TV show from any major network you forgot to TiVo, it will get big.

  4. I love how this guy thinks PC users are waiting for Apple to offer a compelling product…

    most of them will NOT know about the existence of any of these products for at least 3 months.. they’re clueless

  5. I just got back from trolling some of the peecee boards in the technology slums to see what the take was on the Apple announcements today. Here’s one comment that pretty much captured the essence of the hardcore peecee knuckle-heads:

    “i told u it was a video ipod 4 sure, and a itunes to accompany it… skrew the new mac, i’m a pc user and will remain that way, but ipod’s rok…”

    Note the sloppy grammar and style (or lack thereof).

    Rock on Steve!

    ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”raspberry” style=”border:0;” />

  6. “You’re right, it was 64th in the ratings until Apple and Disney added it to iTMS. Watch and learn, my boy, watch and learn. Steve Jobs is the master of all he surveys.”

    Well, I see a couple of possibilities:

    1. It sinks lower in the ratings because fewer people are watching it because more people are buying it.
    2. It sinks lower in the ratings because fewer people are watching it because it is a pale imitation of the original.

    I think it’ll be option #2. The show sucks. I couldn’t even finish the first episode.

    It’s sort of funny because Kolchak: The Night Stalker was a big influence on Chris Carter in creating The X-Files. Now they’re trying to shamelessly rip off The X-Files in creating Night Stalker. I guess what goes around comes around.

    Sorry–I don’t think even Steve Jobs can save that show.

  7. Yes Im still waiting for Macs to do actual TV DVR actions when connected to a Satellite or Digital Cable box. CenterStage is a nice freeware app for Macs, but it takes quite a bit of work and extra hardware to make the whole thing come together. I would like the Mac Mini to gain Front Seat and a huge HD. I really do admire Apple for taking this step though.

  8. “Analyst: Apple rewriting media distribution rules, more people will consider switching to Mac now.”

    I don’t understand that part. Itunes does nicely on pc’s.

    As for tv watched on a dinky screen, most programs don’t deserve any better, but how much are these programs to cost?

    My complete catalog of

    Seinfeld
    Family Guy
    Arrested development
    ER
    Desperate housewives
    The shield
    Simpsons
    Strangers with candy
    malcolm in the middle
    futurama
    MXC
    Playmakers
    The Prisoner
    The Avengers
    Gilligans Island

    and most of

    Bonanza

    is available for $1 an episode. Google my name, find my addy, and get ready to be entertained.

  9. The next thing we’ll see in terms of automotive connectivety is minivans. Think of all those vans with the DVD screen for the kids. Just plug in your video iPod and play music videos or tv shows. Perfect.

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