We have been talking about an Apple television for the better part of the last decade… While it is a small consolation that the article affirms that Apple was actually working on a television during that period, in the end we were wrong in our constant expectation of the product.
No Apple television, right?
Nilay Patel on why an Apple television makes sense:
Building tvOS into an actual TV puts it front and center: you’ll turn on a new TV and see Apple’s TV app, which looks more like the future of the TV interface than anything else on the market. Compared to every other smart TV platform, tvOS is miles ahead: it’s based on iOS, which means it has tons of clever, polished apps and games. This would be no contest.
But that’s exactly why Apple sells Apple TV instead. Even the most recent 4K UHD and HDR televisions are dirt cheap these days, the screens are excellent, and all come with some built-in smart TV management technology. What can Apple bring to the television industry table that isn’t already there?
A TV that has a best-in-class interface, access to a full range of properly-mastered content, and requires zero trips to the settings menu to look amazing? I’d buy that in a heartbeat.
That’s called Apple TV.
I don’t think Apple is actually going to make a TV: the margins will always be low and it’s a lot simpler to sell external boxes people can upgrade every couple years than giant wall-mounted displays. But the window for Apple to make this kind of move is opening again right now. I hope Tim Cook and Eddy Cue see it.
Good golly, molly. I’d like an Apple-branded, Tesla-like self driving car for $25,000, too. Apple could build one. Apple won’t build one. The money just isn’t there. It’s the same way with televisions. The fact that Apple could make an Apple-branded television does not mean it should make one. Where is the benefit to Apple? Would you pay a premium for a device that can only do whatever an Apple TV can do now, or would you prefer a device capable of running on non-Apple televisions?
Apple needs to solve a problem with an Apple-branded television that is not already solved by Apple TV.