PC Magazine: Why Apple TV matters

Apple Store“While PC makers still believe the PC should be the center of the digital home, cable and telecom companies champion smarter set-top boxes and services. Companies such as Akimbo, Digeo, and Digital Deck also offer various twists on this theme, delivering a digital centerpiece for controlling, managing, sharing, and viewing all types of digital content,” Tim Bajarin writes for PC Magazine.

Bajarin writes, “Now Apple is extending its digital lifestyle concept to the TV, with Apple TV. I find this move by Apple very interesting and potentially important to the market because of the impact it may have on consumer trends. Of course, Apple is not the first to try to extend Mac/PC content to the living room; in fact, it’s five years late. Microsoft’s Windows Media Center has been doing this since 2002 with mixed results, and various other media adapters have come to market since then and gotten only minimal consumer acceptance.”

Bajarin writes, “On the other hand, you could say the same for Apple’s late entry into the MP3 space. Though MP3 players had been around since 1997, Apple’s iconic player didn’t arrive until 2002. The iPod’s design and simpler, easy-to-use interface has propelled it to a market share of more than 70 percent.”

Bajarin writes, “Although I don’t expect Apple to have quite the same spectacular results with its Apple TV product, the market impact may be similar to that of the iPod. Apple TV could make moving computer content around the house another mainstream digital activity.”

Full article, with mention of “Apple’s not-so-secret weapon: using its own retail stores to demonstrate how the product will work to mainstream consumers,” here.

Related articles:
Bear Stearns: Apple TV and iPhone have changed the Apple story for the better – February 21, 2007
Deutsche Bank: Apple TV could take 30% of set-top box market within a few years – February 21, 2007
How do Apple TV and Elgato’s EyeTV work together? – February 16, 2007
Apple embraces casual gaming; iPhone, Apple TV to join iPod as gaming devices – February 09, 2007
Former GM of Microsoft’s Xbox Live Arcade: Apple TV to become video game console – February 08, 2007
ZDNet’s Graham: Apple TV hits a number of sweet spots, poised to make a big impact – January 25, 2007
Is Apple out to kill cable television? – January 25, 2007
RUMOR: Apple TV sales blowing away Apple’s internal expectations – January 25, 2007
Steve Jobs: Apple TV is the ‘DVD player for the 21st century’ – January 22, 2007
Apple TV beats out iPod, hits top spot on Apple Store sales chart – January 19, 2007
Report: first batch of 100,000 Apple TVs to ship this month – January 11, 2007
Steve Jobs moves to control the living room with Apple TV – January 10, 2007
Analyst Bajarin: Apple’s iPhone and Apple TV are industry game changers – January 09, 2007
Apple premieres Apple TV: movies, TV shows, music & photos on your big screen TV – January 09, 2007
RUMOR: Apple may enter video game market – December 05, 2006
Could Apple become king of game consoles? – September 26, 2006

33 Comments

  1. A large chunk of the population won’t — can’t — consider AppleTV until Apple decides to allow users to turn on and off the closed-caption information originally available for all their movie and TV programming. The Mac has been a leader in accessibility in the past, but there are 30 million people in the US who need and rely on closed captions to enjoy movies, DVDs and TV shows. In fact, it’s been federal law since the late 1980s that programs on cable and broadcast be captioned. I’m not sure why Apple TV is exempt from these laws, but a class-action suit may be just around the corner.

    AFAIK, none of the video programming currently offered via iTunes has closed captions available. Certainly, there’s no way to view them within iTunes. And I’m not going to rush out and spend $300 just to see IF the captions can be accessed via the TV set. And until they work this out, Mac-loving wife (who’s deaf) and I will have no choice but NOT to buy this product, as much as we’d otherwise love it.

  2. AppleTV. Yawn.

    Wake me when Apple ships something useful, like OSX 10.5.

    I need to watch downloaded video in my living room like a grapefruit needs a fire extinguisher. Less, actually.

    If the damn thing had a DVD player built-in, then maybe I could see devoting space to it. As it is, it is the stupidest waste of $299 short of contributing to George W’s presidential library.

  3. @ informed,

    Yea, I kinda agree. This Apple TV needs to grow up a lot before I even consider buying one. Just wait a year or two or three. Like the iPhone, I am a little tired of hearing about it too.

    George W’s presidential library will have nothing but crack pipes, comic books and homosexual porn mags in it…might be worth a visit?

  4. I need to watch downloaded video in my living room like a grapefruit needs a fire extinguisher. Less, actually.

    Wow. That was clever.

    Timeshifting TV shows and movies.. yea, that’ll never catch on.

  5. In virtually all the stories about Apple TV I read about size, the wireless protocols, the USB disk port… etc, etc etc.. Nothing but tech features and how they compare to the tech features of other media routers. What I DON”T see is review of the FrontRow user experience for accessing media, and comparisons of FrontRow vs whatever UI is supplied by competitors.

    Please, reviewers and pundits, give us the end-to-end review. The whole enchilada.

  6. @ mike

    While I agree that time shifting is great, and has changed the way many watch video programming, I happen to know a guy that’s in the television ratings business, kind of a Neilson competitor. According to him, the vast majority of people still watch programming when it’s aired. And by vast majority I mean upwards of 90% of the US population.

    It’s slowly catching on, but not there yet. Maybe TV will help in that regard.

    Magic word: served, as in how I like my TV served, a la carté.

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