Sony sets stage for Apple to dominate the 4K Ultra HDTV market

“Sony recently announced aggressive price points for it’s all-new XBR 55″ and 65″ 4K Ultra HDTVs,” Mark Reschke writes for T-GAAP. “Sony will be launching the 55″ base model for a seemingly jaw dropping $4,999, while its largest 84″ set continues to drop jaws for the exactly opposite reason, coming in at $24,999.”

“Rumors continue to swirl about Apple entering the market with an all-in-one Apple TV plus HDTV device rumored to be called ‘iTV,'” Reschke writes. “When breaking into new markets, Apple has a history of leapfrogging the competition’s incremental steps… Direct content and interface enhancements are strong arguments that could prove successful for an Apple HDTV, but Apple’s core strength when entering new markets has been the ability to blow away the competition with new hardware that just can’t be ignored. Hardware is what grabs the attention of the low-information consumer, forcing them to tune in and engage.”

Reschke writes, “While Sony attempts to reinvent themselves by launching their XBR 55″ 4K set at $4,999, it is only going to turn heads towards the 4K market, while Apple crashes into living rooms with a 60″ 4K TV, around $1,999, containing controls and features that will just prove to be the icing on the Apple 4K TV cake. Sony will have only set the table for Apple to sit down and enjoy the great living room feast.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related articles:
Apple’s 4K television opportunity – May 10, 2013
Apple iTV may launch for Christmas ’13 with Ultra HD 4K resolution – March 29, 2013
Analyst: 60-inch Apple iTV to launch this year – April 3, 2013

33 Comments

    1. “Sony recently announced aggressive price points for it’s all-new XBR 55 . . .”

      Folks, would you take lessons from a driving instructor who cannot tell the difference between LEFT and RIGHT? Isn’t that simple distinction important in such a field of endeavor?

      Then why would we listen to this “expert” who cannot tell the difference between “its” and “it’s”? If a supposedly educated adult cannot distinguish between two such elementary and rudimentary words as these, how can he or she be trusted with investing one’s money in a market going UP and DOWN? Does Mr. Reschke know the difference between THOSE two words?

      Gawd, but I hate stupid and/or functionally illiterate people.

      1. Functionally illiterate means the person makes a noise but doesn’t get the point across to the listener.

        A monkey at a keyboard is functionally illiterate. A monkey asking for food from the zoo keeper gets its point across very well.

        You understood the entire article. The author isn’t stupid and he isn’t functionally illiterate either. He probably uses Microsoft Word with that functionally illiterate spelling/grammar spellcheck.

  1. If Apple could get the name “iTV”, they would have done it long ago. ITV is a decades old UK TV channel. It shows how little fact checking the writer did.

    1. Sir Jonny Ives has struck a silent deal already with the well known UK network channel. Have faith, everything is a commodity when offered the right price.

    2. I whince too every time I read “rumored to be called iTV”. It’s currently called Apple TV because ITV already exists and have publically said that they will not allow that name to be used. Even if ITV changed their minds, I imagine the cost would be so high it wouldn’t be worth paying it, after all iTV isn’t exactly inspired!

  2. I seriously doubt that Apple is going to release a 4K TV, for which there is little software and no significant improvement in quality unless you have really large screens.

    1. Just like with the personal computer market in the 70s.
      Just like with the workstation market back in the late 80s.
      Just like with the portable music player market.
      Just like with the smartphone market.
      Just like with the tablet market.

      While I find it difficult to believe that Apple will come out with its own TV, I also find it difficult to believe that if Apple did so, it would be as bad a flop as you predict. (or was that sarcasm?)

      1. TVs aren’t the same though.

        Look at Apples cinema displays.. They haven’t set the market on fire because they don’t offer a compelling value proposition and they are defined by the content they deliver. Exactly the same as TVs. Apple may offer a TV set but it will be niche product for hardcore fans. The real opportunity will lie in the content source.

      2. Apple would not “flop”, I agree. But to list the things you had about prior apple success I as atrocious.
        Just to hit two points, the Mac faltered for personal PC use for a long time. Saying that they owned the market, which is what this article is saying and you’re comparing it to, does not compute (pun intended).
        Lastly, the tablet/smartphone market? If you look at the new standard, Google’s Android has become that. Especially for smartphones; Apple now just holds the old folk and uninformed market.
        No matter how much revenue Apple makes, Google shall be ahead from this point on. I’m sorry if you do not agree but it is the utter truth.
        Maybe there should be another article about a Google TV…lol…that would have been a better prediction and more interesting. (They hold the advertisement market so why not).

  3. What is this guy on, Apple is so well known for undercutting the competition on price. Why not say $999.99 it’s not going to Happen, Apple has to buy the displays from one of these other established manufactures, if they could build one for $1999 the would sell it for that, these are companies that only dream of Apple like margins. This is a hit piece trying to set expectations so that when Apple comes out with a $6,000 iTV everyone will scream price gouging.

    1. I thot the same thing when the rumors of a 2048-by-1536-pixel resolution iPad surfaced. I was convinced there was NO way Apple could offer ANY device at that resolution for $499.

      But they did it and no one else could match those specs/price for at least several months.

      That said, a 60″ 4K TV at $2000 seems a little ambitious. I was thinking more like a 50″ 4K at $2000. That would still be amazing.

  4. 4K in the home is ridiculous considering the first digital theater projectors were, and I’d assume many still are, 720p. I didn’t hear anybody complaining 720p didn’t look good on a 30ft screen. Now we need 4000p on a 60″ screen!!! Please… spare me!!

    1. 4K is not 4,000p. It is actually 2160p, which is the current 4K Ultra HD, as well as DCI standard (the difference between the two being horisontal resolution).

      Ten years ago, everyone was saying how DVD was perfect, it being digital, clear and crisp, and HD was pointless and useless.

      Technology moves on and this is the way it goes. 4K will be supplanted by 8K (already defined as the 8K Ultra HD standard), and who knows which next. And there will always be geezers like us who will claim that VHS (or whichever system of yesteryear was current when we were young) had the best image “warmth” or whatnot…

    2. We complained about poor resolution projectors with crappy color accuracy.

      It seems we were not alone. Losing customers quickly, movie theatres have upgraded their digital projectors to at least 2048 x 1080 or now 4096 x 2160 resolution. You can visit NEC or Barco or other cinema projector manufacturers’ sites to see what they have to offer.

      The consumer market, which of course is much more price sensitive, also has plenty of people who can’t distinguish colors from a color wheel. Nevertheless, ever since Blu-Ray, practically every videophile on the face of the planet has a 1080p home system minimum, with at least 5 and often 7 or 9 channels of audio depending on home theatre size.

      And yes, we can tell the difference between a crappy downloaded Netflix file and Blu-Ray disc on our 60″ screen.

    3. Actually no its not. One of the benefits of 4K which most people don’t realize is it allows you to sit much closer to the TV without feeling like you’re sitting so close and without noticing the individual pixels etc.
      By the same argument, retinal display is a crock on a 9.7″ ipad. Is it ?

  5. More likely, IF Apple even bothered to release a 4K TV, they would likely price it similarly to the Sony (which looks fantastic, btw) and compete as they usually do: content, hardware/software design, and ecosystem integration.

    1. Doubt it. Apple has a different model. Those Sony TVs will be $2000 when they become mainstream… and then $1000.

      Apple will take the end price, give it a healthy margin and sell the software as a service. There is NO good distribution channel for 4K right now. Although they can fit a movie on a BD with H.265 compression, BD players will need an upgrade.

      Apple has been building up to this for quite some time.

  6. Apple is known for boutique products that are cool and for which people are willing to pay a premium for simplicity and elegance.

    I am skeptical Apple would ever contemplate entering the “TV-including-display” market because A) so much of the manufacturing price is dominated by the cost of the flat panel, and B) TVs are viewed as a cheap commodity by the typical consumer, and C) there are already many existing competitors who have a head start.

    Because of the above three factors, there is too little room for Apple to bring added value to the proposition (the whole TV including the display panel).

    If Apple gets into TV, I predict it will be to more fully exploit the strengths they already posses: Something like iTunes—only better, where it is integrated more seamlessly with the “couch” experience; a variation of Apple TV (the “tuner” box alone); and Apple’s California and North Carolina data centers to spool on-demand video.

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