Study: Demand for an Apple TV set threatens to seriously disrupt established players Sony, Samsung and LG

KAE a leading strategic marketing and research consultancy and Toluna, a global pioneer in online polls, surveys and opinions have teamed up to release a major new study illustrating how large manufacturers could lose out if Apple launches a physical TV set.

Overall, the study highlighted that 25% of consumers in the US find the idea appealing and would buy it once it becomes commercially available – compared to 30% in the UK. Consumers that already own at least one Apple device are more likely to buy an Apple TV set, 2 in 5 (US 38% – UK 43%) find the idea appealing and would purchase should the product become available.

Lee Powney, Chief Commercial Officer at KAE said in a statement: “The huge potential of an Apple TV set, although impressive, should not be seen in isolation. Such a move would be an incredibly powerful extension of the iOS platform, accessed via a more compelling device option than Apple’s current offering (Apple TV). It would create new monetisation opportunities for developers and accessory manufacturers by bringing the Apple experience further into the home. This would strengthen both the ecosystem and the benefits that consumers derive from owning many differing Apple devices. Will Apple do this? The pressure to maintain the lion’s share of preference from ecosystem members and create additional device-to-device interaction benefits for consumers means it should do this, and must do this.”

Sony, Samsung and LG are the market-leading brands most likely to suffer should Apple decide to launch its mooted Apple TV concept. In the UK, a sizeable 38% of current Sony TV owners and 36% of Samsung TV owners claimed they find the idea of an Apple TV appealing and would buy one. In the US, the brand most at risk from the concept is LG, where 3 in 10 (31%) of owners would be likely to convert should an Apple TV become available.

Approximately 3 in 5 US consumers questioned who were very likely to buy the TV said they trust Apple to produce a high quality TV set (59%), a sentiment echoed by UK consumers (62%). Design also features highly in respondents’ reasons to purchase with over half of all those likely to buy claiming that Apple’s reputation in ground-breaking design would no doubt also be used in TV (52% in US and 58% in the UK).

MD of KAE, David Rankin said, “Although this wave of research looked only at the USA and UK, we believe that the greatest revenue opportunities in 2013-15 for an Apple TV set are clustered in the ‘home territories’ of Apple’s TV competitors – i.e. Japan, Korea and China. We’re excited at the prospect of measuring that potential and the impact that success will have on Apple’s share price.”

Consumers were asked which features they felt an Apple TV set would be equipped with: The top anticipated feature for potential customers of the unconfirmed Apple TV set is similar for both countries, which is the ability to connect to the internet (73% in the US & 75% in the UK). The other top features selected by potential US customers were running apps on TV (44%) and the ability to synchronise automatically with other Apple devices (41%). For the UK market the other two main features expected were the ability to synchronise automatically with other Apple devices (47%) and for the device to be 3D enabled (41%).

The nationally representative KAE Toluna survey was conducted across the US and the UK, with a total sample size of 5,892 (2,921 respondents from the US and 2,971 respondents from the UK). The article’s based on the opinions of those who currently have a TV at home – 5,747 (UK – 2,891; US – 2,856). The profile of those consumers who find it appealing and would buy an Apple TV set comprised men and women aged 25-44, living in city centres or city suburban areas, with an average monthly income of between £1500-£2999 in the UK; and men and women aged 25-44, earning on average over $5000 monthly in the US.

Source: KAE

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]


  1. This is so stupid as to be beyond words…

    I truly hope that Steve Jobs was talking about having “cracked” a future UI concept for the AppleTV and nothing more…the idea of manufacturing and delivering Apple-branded TVs (especially with their current margins) just strikes me as a rathole they don’t want to fall into to…

    1. I agree. I just don’t see Apple building a TV that I want badly enough to pay what they’d have to charge for it. I’m a huge Apple nut, too – multiple computers, iPad, iPhones, iPods, AppleTV, Cinema Display), etc.

      I’d be interested in seeing that survey again with Apple’s retail prices in the discussion. Even as a huge Apple fan, if I had to choose between an Apple 37″ or a Panasonic 50″ for the same price… I probably wouldn’t choose the Apple, unless it did something really, really amazing that we don’t know about yet.

      Not visualizing the Apple TV.

    2. I think it is a must for Apple to continue moving into the home. Think about a TV that would not become obsolete so quickly. One whose software would be updated by Apple. One that could be physically upgraded for a longer life. I think it’s time to make the move into TVs and like the other moves that have been made it needs to be dramatic and overwhelmingly better than the others sets out there. They’re the company who have proven that they can do it.

      1. That is what I have now! I *upgrade* my TV when a new aTV or device I use on the TV comes out.

        Seriously I do not see how Apple moving into making a full blown TV would make them become obsolete in a shorter time frame. They don’t really become obsolete all that fast right now.

        I have an old Samsung 42 inch DLP in my garage that I bought back in 2004. I plug in an aTV and its just as modern as my 47 inch LCD in my living room that I bought in 2010. I don’t see how integrating what we already have into the TV would make an arrangement like that better. It would likely go the other way and your 8 year old TV will be like your 8 year old mac – it will feel slow, old and you won’t be running the latest version of TV-iOS, OSX or iOS or whatever they ship on the thing.

    3. A “display” with an apple TV built in and an input for your cable box. Apple makes the components now. How could combining them be all that hard.

      One of the “display” inputs will be “tuner”, you cable box.

  2. Surveys like this are not worth much. The survey really only reflects Apples excellent reputation… and little else. I am as interested as anyone in any TV Apple may come out with… but I have no idea what features it will have or what the price will be. I will consider the product… but there is no way I could answer a survey in the affirmative as to whether I will buy it.

    1. I’m with you. It’s simply guessing about what’s behind door number 3! Who the hell knows? Just another useless article to fill space on a web site for Apple fans. Surely there are more intelligent articles to reproduce?

      1. And – there are a ‘slew’ of these products already…
        Panasonic, Sharp, Samsung – all have HDTV capable of connecting wifi and internet content…

        Take the MP3 market as an example.
        Carefully Apple waited saw how they could upstage the universe of junky devices and provide real value and evoke real desire and passion to the consumer fro a wonderful product.

        A Apple TV will be this same experience however more time is needed. And do not expect Apples TV solution to be these Massive screens in the 60″ or 80″ range. They will be retina screens luckily at 30″ and 40″ and most likely not as slim as Samsung as there shall be a fully operating iMac inside.

        1. I wouldn’t disagree with your premise. Apple will not build anything like we’ve seen so far. And the fact that I can’t visualize what might be done instead explains why I’m an Apple customer (I know good stuff when I see it) and not an Apple employee.

    1. I agree. Otherwise, How will they continue to grow when they no longer double year on year growth for iPhone. Every product has a plateau and the iPhone is starting to see it. I personally would love an Apple Television not to mention how other appliances could be integrated into the home.

  3. There will not be a iTV…
    the iMacTV will be this convergence product with a all new retina screen when that comes into reality form Sharp.

    A retina TV at 40″ will blow away a 60″ HDTV (the iPADnew) already does – this sets an all new standard for Television and the Networks and players do not even exist yet. So it will not happen yet. The OS is not even there… all this only just in the works.

    The birth will be seen in the iMac – Apples only consumer level computer that has a future promise as the remaining desktop machine. TV and COMPUTER as one – the cracked code that Jobs saw was a conceptual direction that Apple could take if it wishes to embark this choice from hobby Apple TV into a True iMacTV unit.

    Samsung and Sharp are approaching TV units in different directions and Apple seems to like Sharps choice. Retina will play a very important roll as Monitor and Television near this convergence. The new TV is the COMPUTER… for Apple its the iMacTV.

  4. Consumers do not know what they want until Apple evokes a vision and provides us with a product to judge this idea of a Televisions and revolutionizing its universe.

    iMacTV is that product but it will not happen tomorrow.

  5. I find the whole current TV experience to be enormously frustrating from TV settings, to program finding, to on demand, etc. and I’m a lifelong techie. The User Experience is improving, but Apple is going to do to TV what it did to the cellphone handset manufacturers.

  6. It’ll happen. Don’t know what and when, but I feel it’s inevitable. The current ATV is just a testing phase and a way to lay down the groundwork. It’ll all be about tying together the ecosystem (iCloud) through various types of interface devices (iPhone, iPad, Mac) and the TV is sort of the last frontier as far as the home is concerned. Then, I believe it’ll be about built-in iPads in autos (smartcars?) and this would have to be in the 7~8″ range.

    Apple will not let Samsung, Google, Sony, Microsoft, LG, etc. run away with control of the living room. Unlike any of these competitors, Apple can again tie together the whole widget into one seamless and easy-to-use system. The TV would just need to be an extension of the ecosystem that is already in place.

    I don’t have a clue on what it will be and how it will work, etc., but I just don’t see how Apple can stay out of it when all of Apple’s chief competitors are racing to fixate people’s eyeballs on *their* smartTV’s of the future. This “revolution” will evolve much slower than the smartphone but things will change whether we want it to or not in the TV scape.

    Judging by how the Apple ecosystem is now evolving, I believe it’ll be really good and I’ll certainly get one. I’m a typical family guy with a home totally wired into the Apple ecosystem that includes MBA, iMac, two iPhones, two iPads, three iPods, and an ATV. Took some work but everything is now working seamlessly together but it’s obvious that things can and will get better and better.

    I’m all for an Apple-branded TV. The current one (a 46″ Toshiba HDTV) can be moved upstairs with the ATV and we’ll just give away the ancient Sony Trinitron that the kids use to play Wii games. I’m ready whenever Apple is.

  7. I chatted to a guy who worked for apple almost 20 years when i worked for apple in the uk about convergance

    We both agreed it would happen

    But the basic fact with all the bells and whistles apple or whoever bring to the table if the wife wants to watch some dross on a rubbish channel she will!

  8. “krquet
    People don’t watch TV anymore.”
    Really? Not so much, perhaps, but plenty still watch significant amounts. I know I do.
    And I also know that my five/six year old 40″ Bravia won’t be replaced with any other tv, not even an Apple one, for the foreseeable future.

  9. This doesn’t even account for the sales these companies are already losing. I’m sure there are quite a few people like me who have been holding off on purchasing an HDTV in anticipation of Apple’s TV. I have wanted to get another HDTV, but I can’t see buying one now only to have Apple produce one I would really want in a few months.

    1. I agree with Tim. I’ve been holding off for years now. What I’d really like as the clincher is convenient and legal one-stop access to US content here in Japan.

  10. I am so anxious to upgrade my current TV display – a Pioneer “Pro” model plasma which, unfortunately, has only 1024×768 resolution. It’s served me well for five years. Love the wide viewing angle and the screen uniformity, but scaling and interpolation only carry one so far. I want true HD.

    Every set I’ve looked at is a compromise – in viewing angle, color accuracy, black levels or uniformity. Or it’s not available in a size I can handle. I’d love to learn Apple has something meeting my “sweet spot”, but, like others, I don’t see Apple getting into such a thin-margin business. When it sells smaller margin products (like music) it’s to sell higher margin hardware (like iPods).

    Two weeks from now I’ll be able to check out a new offering that just might be The One; we’ll see. But I’m not waiting for Apple.

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