February 8, 2012
Apple Prepping To Take Over Your Home Television Next
The company who makes a habit of turning the world upside down will be focusing next on the television industry. Up until now, Apple´s television-related product efforts have been limited to a $99 device called Apple TV, which has long been called a “hobby” by Apple executives but allows streaming iTunes music and video as well as Netflix, MLB.com and YouTube content to play on your home television.
Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who died Oct. 5, had said in an interview that he “finally cracked” how to build a TV with a simple user interface that would wirelessly synchronize content with Apple´s other devices, reports Heather Perlberg for Bloomberg.Canadian telcos, Bell and Rogers, unnamed sources tell Tony Smith writing for Hardware, were approached by Apple, which is looking to ink deals with companies that specialize in internet access, and pursuing big-name broadband ISPs to get behind the Apple-branded “iTV.”
Peter Misek, analyst for Jefferies had previously suggested Bell and Rogers would make suitable partners for Apple´s plans, and that carriers AT&T and Verizon would likely also offer the product in the United States, Reuters reports.
Internet TV is a big part of Apple´s game plan and it´s specifically targeting the iTV at the growing number of viewers who get their video content from the web rather that cable or live TV.
More and more viewers are stepping away from cable, motivated by the increasing cost of cable service, but also by the sense that they´re not using the service as much as they used to. With the cable companies bundling more and more unseen channels, customers are finally pushing back and demanding to pay for only what they want to watch.
With online movies and television shows being easier to view all the time, cutting the cable is becoming more of an option than ever. Indeed, why pay a lot to watch a show one month when you can view it more cheaply a few months later? And you can pay just for the content you want, not all the channels that you don´t.
Companies such as Netflix, Amazon and YouTube, not to mention TV-to-viewer mediation companies like TiVo are well poised to expand and become mainstream players on your home television.
In January, Tivo said 38 percent of viewers no longer watch shows live, but come to them later, at a time that suits them. They use DVRs such as TiVo, they use downloads, or they use catch-up TV services.
All of that being said, Apple´s prime selling point will be its superior user interface which millions of folks are familiar with from using iPhones and iPads. That familiarity combined with Apple´s marketing prowess will certainly make waves in yet another industry.
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