On 1/11/07, Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
While it was introduced first, Apple TV seemed like a rather obvious product that did not need much promotion. The graph near the end of the Macworld presentation may be a factor in why the iPhone stole the show. Apple is seeking to grab 1% of the global cell phone market in 2008 - 10 million units out of an annual market that is approaching 1 billion. To put this in perspective, in 2006 the total volume of units for several key CE products was: Game consoles: 26 million Digital cameras: 94 million MP3 players: 195 million PCs 209: million It remains to be seen what impact Apple TV will have in a marketplace where multimedia PCs have failed to generate much of a market. From here it looks like Apple TV is just another Apple peripheral, like a Wi-Fi base station. The hub of Apple's universe is iTunes, an application that runs on Macs and millions of PCs. It is the home media server and online store where both free and paid content can be acquired. The iPod, iPhone and Apple TV are all peripherals that leverage your media library. Often on this list, and in a world where analysts try to pick the winners from the annual lottery of new product introductions, we hear the same old refrain: "You can't do that." Usually this is in the context that consumers are not interested in... John W. thinks mobile video is DOA. Phil Swann thinks the center of the universe is HDTV, that video iPods were a huge flop, despite the FACT that Apple has sold more than 50 million video downloads. Note to Phil - Apple TV supports 1280 x 720@24P playback on HDTV displays (now what do you think that format will be used for?). Bert thinks that the broadcast networks have the content world cornered - and that ATSC transmissions will sustain a dying broadcast industry. And Bill Gates thinks that consumers are going to put up with notoriously poor software.
Sorry Craig, but it's time to remove the rose-colored eyeglasses. Vista Media Center completely spanks the Apple ITV. Now if they would just release that PCI-based DirecTV tuner card... And the iPhone - jack of all trades and master of none. Not enough storage to make it a real pocket PMP. For just music it is a $499 Nano. Not enough resolution to make it a pocket browser (my Nokia N800 has more). A battery that can't be removed (in a phone!). No tactile feedback (now I have to look at the phone to dial a number). And to top it off a walled garden application environment. Clamshells are here for a reason - to protect devices. I wouldn't be surprised to see the exact same issue with the iPhone as was seen with the iPod line - screens scratched to the point of being illegible. Having said that the iPhone looks great.. but I would pass on it for the above reasons. At least with my SE phone I can take a photo with my DSLR, pop the card out, pop it into the phone and upload it to my flickr account in one pass (or just take the photo on my phone). Nevermind that I can also leave the phone in my pocket and use my N800 to connect to the internet and browse using a 'real' resolution. I do love how the press has spun the iPhone's ability to run 'OSX Applications'. Please. What a load of nonsense. We all know these applications will be stripped down widgets. And only select developers will be allowed to release applications for the iPhone. Here I'll give you one headache - Apple seem to be quite content cobbling more features into iTunes. You and I and everyone else know that iTunes just won't last in the long run for handling media management, downloads, iTV interfacing, .... it has been bloated since V6. What are Apple's plans for this bloatware? At least Microsoft are forking out to a variety of media interfaces and applications as well as a media hub / storage concept. Apple needs an iServer to go with that iTV box. One that could feed Apple, Microsoft, and all other OS's out there with uPnP (as much as I detest it). Cheers Kon