Apple is rumored to be teaming up with a major TV maker to sell Apple-branded TVs in the fall.
According to DailyTech, citing a former Apple executive, Apple’s TVs will be sold through Apple’s retail stores and will “blow Netflix and all those other guys away.”
We’ve heard this one before. So often, in fact, I’m inclined to roll my eyes. The TV business is hyper-competitive and hard.
But Apple has a big new technology that might make all the difference:
According to DailyTech, the iOS-powered displays will combine the Apple TV + iTunes in one box — a television set.
Apple has been rumored for years to be making a TV — it’s a major industry set to be disrupted. Apple’s latest Apple TV has done failry well, selling millions of units, but Steve Jobs still describes it as a “hobby.”
Regarding the TV industry, here is what Steve Jobs said last year at AllThingsD:
Q: Is it time to throw out the interface for TV? Does television need a new human interface.
A: The problem with innovation in the TV industry is the go-to-market strategy. The TV industry has a subsidized model that gives everyone a set top box for free. So no one wants to buy a box. Ask TiVo, ask Roku, ask us… ask Google in a few months. The television industry fundamentally has a subsidized business model that gives everyone a set-top box, and that pretty much undermines innovation in the sector. The only way this is going to change is if you start from scratch, tear up the box, redesign and get it to the consumer in a way that they want to buy it. But right now, there’s no way to do that….The TV is going to lose until there’s a viable go-to-market strategy. That’s the fundamental problem with the industry. It’s not a problem with the technology, it’s a problem with the go-to-market strategy….I’m sure smarter people than us will figure this out, but that’s why we say Apple TV is a hobby.
The big difference now is that Apple has a killer technology that allows Apple to bypasses the cable carriers: AirPlay.
AirPlay is Apple’s go-to-market strategy. AirPlay could be the value-add that convinces consumers to buy an Apple-branded TV.
Apple will continue to distribute content through iTunes and The App Store. Customers’ iPhones, Macs and iPads will be the portals to content (bypassing the cable companies’ set-top boxes), allowing them to play their own content — or Hollywood’s — on the big screen via AirPlay built in.
The App Store will serve up TV shows, movies, videos and music, as well as new classes of apps like games and living-room oriented stuff we haven’t seen yet.
Apple already has a huge entertainment ecosystem. With this in place, an Apple-branded TV doesn’t seem so farfetched. Anyone disagree?