Apple TV Still A “Hobby”

Feb 23rd, 2010 | By | Category: Internet TV, Video


Apple Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook, speaking today in San Francisco, explained why he believes the Apple TV is a great product, but there just isn’t a large enough market to make the hardware worth a great deal of concentration from his company.

The product is a “hobby,” he said, because it doesn’t compare to the phone, computer and MP3 player markets in terms of sales.

“Apple TV is still a hobby,” he said. “We’ve been very clear about that.”

But he also suggested the company’s set-top-box device wouldn’t necessarily lay dormant. It may just take time for the potential market to grow.

“Because our gut says something’s there, we’re continuing to invest in this,” he said. “But today, it’s still just a hobby.”

Apple TV’s adoption has stymied by Apple’s inability to get workable content deals for the device.

But this may be a chicken or the egg issue. Content providers are going to be hesitant to make deals with Apple unless it can make Apple TV a platform to be reckoned with.

This isn’t going to happen unless Apple opens up the platform to applications and lets Apple TV develop into a social platform for interacting with Internet content.

via AppleInsider

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2 Responses to “Apple TV Still A “Hobby””

  1. I have a Mac Mini (connected to my TV), an iPhone and an iTouch. I also have a wife and three small children (7, 5, and 3). I’m a geek, and I can watch my media anywhere – typically on the iPhone, but often on the laptop for a full length movie. When I am home and in charge of the remote, I can play DVDs for the family on the Mini.

    I just got an Apple TV to address the consumer-end of the market, namely, a device that my family can use to play digital video in a meaningful way on the television. They don’t want to fire up the Mini and make get it to run the right video-playing application. They don’t want a cable running from the laptop to the jacks in front of the tv. They want a remote control that they can point and click and say “Show me a list of movies…ok, play this one.”

    The rest of Apple’s product line has plenty of ways to play video, but they are strangely missing the most obvious one, “Play it well (HDMI) on my big tv in the middle of the room.” I don’t understand why Apple TV is NOT a big market, based on this. iPad and iTouch and such for portable media when I want to take it into bed with me, but if I’m going to be in the big tv room, I want to show it on the big tv. QED.

    • elliot says:

      I’ve got an Apple TV too, but am often frustrated that Apple doesn’t take the platform more seriously.

      For example – it supports YouTube, but the quality is lousy and it’s really painful to search for videos using the remote to enter text. Try it and it will send you running to your computer.

      It seems like Apple doesn’t really have their vision together for how Internet TV should work. It’s not just them, really, but all the set-top box vendors.

      What I want is access to any TV show or movie, plus indie content, through a consistent and easy to use interface. I think a lot of people want this, and aren’t going to be excited about partial solutions.

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