That’s Why It’s Called Apple TV

April 18th, 2011

Adam Lisagor:

But Apple has already built its TV. It’s called the Apple TV and that’s why it’s called the Apple TV. Because we’re supposed to be rethinking what a TV is. The TV is not the screen with seven different inputs for your players and boxes and game machines. The TV is the content and the buttons we touch to get to that content.

I think that’s exactly right. I’m hesitant to declare Apple will never release something, but I am pretty close to it with a television. I don’t see the value in Apple building a TV, for them or the user. It’d be a better TV than the typical one, sure; but how much better? Is it iPod better? iPhone better? I don’t think so.

If it’s not dramatically better, than the next question to ask is whether it’s complementary to what Apple’s trying to do. A TV is certainly complementary to the Mac and iOS devices—all would be better off with one that integrates perfectly with them. But is there an advantage to building a TV over building a set-top box, as Apple’s already done?

I don’t think so. There’s a lot of negatives: they’re expensive and people don’t often replace them, which means Apple TV applications would be stuck building for years-old hardware, for example. A set-top box is simply a better solution.