Fast Company blows it: Says Apple TV ‘flopped, didn’t survive the Aughties’

Apple Online StoreUnder the heading, “Gadget Flops of the Decade: 10 Devices That Didn’t Survive the Aughties,” Fast Company inexplicably lists the Apple TV which today remains on sale in thousands of brick and mortar locations and, of course, online.

Fast Company reports, “While not as big of a flop as some of the other dud devices of the decade, the Apple TV hasn’t been as wildly successful–neither financially nor in terms of mindshare–as Apple’s other iconic products of the decade (everything from the iPhone to the iMac and the Nano). The device lets you rent and buy TV shows and movies off of iTunes, as well as stream your PC’s photos, music, and other media on any TV in the house. But it’s sadly lacking in non-iTunes options other than YouTube, something that makes it a hampered choice when compared with broader offerings on Windows 7 PCs, Xbox 360, Tivo, Boxee, and even plain old Macs. But things may be looking up for the flat-little-media-extender-from-Cupertino (a dead ringer for the MacMini, looks-wise). Apple doesn’t give out sales figures for the Apple TV, but earlier this year it reported that sales had tripled over the previous year. And with a few tweaks to the product, Apple could easily resurrect this one for the 10s.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: While a silly, indefensible gaffe on Fast Company’s part, this should serve as a not-so-subtle hint to Apple’s marketing department. We love our Apple TVs (especially with our iPhones running Apple’s free Remote app), use them multiple times per week, and remain convinced that many others would too, if only they knew of Apple TV’s existence. People who own and use Apple TVs understand.

BTW, according to Piper Jaffray’s estimates, Apple has sold approximately 6.6 million Apple TVs to date, without a shred of marketing. For perspective: Apple TV sales are 3.3x the rosiest of predictions for Amazon’s total 2010 Kindle sales. Some flop.

To crown their idiocy, in the very same issue, Fast Company names Kindle among their “Gadgets of the Decade.”

Do you have a question or suggestion for Fast Company? Contact the publication via webform here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Jai G.” for the heads up.]


  1. I love my apple tv’s (yes I have two) I just wish apple would pay it a bit more attention and add iplayer support and hulu for the Americans this isn’t a big ask and iplayer shouldn’t effect apples bottom line. In the future blu ray intergration across the entire apple range would be nice too, but here’s to wishful thinking.

  2. That guy is right… Apple TV is doomed as it is today.
    The problem is the set top box approach. It is too cumbersome for the benefits it brings.
    I do not see myself buy an Apple TV in its current format.
    However, I can see myself buy a TV set with cool extra features.
    Therefore, to be hit, Apple TV should become a TV set.

  3. I have never seen the point of the AppleTV. If I’m going to connect a computerized media device, other than the cable box, to my tv I want it to act like a computer. So if I want to stream my media library I will hook up my laptop and turn my tv into a giant computer monitor. Video, photos, music, games, internet, etc, all on my tv.

    So please tell me why I would by something that can only play iTunes/iLife stuff and Youtube, and only in 720p, not 1080p. And even at $250, for a one purpose device it seems like a waste to me.

    So please, someone enlighten me.

  4. I have an AppleTV and it is great! I’d love to buy a second unit for other rooms in my home, but not in it’s current form. I think we will see why Hulu and other free streaming sites have not been allowed on the AppleTV in just a few weeks. Apple and Steve have bigger plans.

  5. @Ting

    A decade from now is waaaaay to far away for my attention span. Apple should make Apple TV software available for Kindle. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  6. For the present I’m highly satisfied with my Roku box streaming Netflix and all the new additions such as Pandora and Revision3, plus DVDs or Blu-ray discs. It makes for a very economical setup.

    Now, if Apple comes up with a subscription plan …

  7. @Sandwich

    I agree. Streaming will be huge for Apple for the next decade.

    I hoping I can store the things I buy from iTunes Store on Mobile Me and have it streamed everywhere I go, to any device in my arsenal.

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