Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Can Apple TV win?

I have not seen any significant value created by Apple TV, at least this first-generation product. Today's computers, especially the laptops, could be easily connected to TV, and you can use TV as a monitor to display anything on your computer. However, most people do not know how to do it. If the Apple TV only can sync the content from your computer and play it on TV, I do not see why I would pay $299 to buy it. The wireless is a good selling point, but is it worth the money? If the next generation of Apple TV can enable user to download movie from iTunes directly without the help of computer, it might be able to be a winner in the future entertainment market.

I might be wrong, because there are some not-so-valuable products that still can stay in the market. For example, even a jar can be easily opened with some little help of a spoon, the jar opener still can be sold for about 60 bucks. Maybe its cool design makes it a good decoration in kitchen.


Tom Hamilton said...

I agree with Weimin that the Apple TV product provides limited value, but I also feel that the product is lacking in hardware also. The Apple TV product only provides two methods for connecting it to a TV: HDMI and component (RGB). In other words it only works with high definition (480p or better) televisions. We touched on this in class. It is important to note that according to research firm Informa Telecoms and Media 4% of the market is high-definition compatible. According to Macworld Apple has about a 3.5% market share in the PC market. So I guess it makes sense they would pursue the HDTV market with such a narrow focus. With 1.2 billion households having televisions, why didn't they just add one more video output that would be compatible with the rest of us?

Thanh said...

I actually do think the AppleTV can add value to the right people... like my mom, who would rather have a nice, quiet, simple box than fuss with her computer.

Also, don't forget that each AppleTV is a full-fledged computer running OSX. I think the real value is going to be in the hacks that people will come up with for this thing. Peer to peer file sharing, anyone?