Thursday, September 10, 2015

The Future Of TV Is Apps

The latest version of Apple TV was announced yesterday and with it an announcement from CEO Tim Cook that the future of TV is apps.  No longer will we ask to turn to a certain channel; now we can say switch to this app or that.  Not such a farfetched idea but Cook may be a little late to the game.  The new Apple TV will be enabled to offer both streaming content from apps like Netflix, HBO and more as well as gaming apps.  And all will be accessible via Siri as well as a new remote.

But other boxes are already in the marketplace offering both video streaming and games.  The biggest two in the space are Playstation and Xbox while others are enabled for video streaming like Chromecast and Roku.  And others like TiVo try to bridge the gap between cable boxes and streaming.

Still the release of the Apple TV and their new TV app store marks another growth opportunity for Apple.  Because as we start using devices to access apps on our TV, we open ourselves to new screens for on screen advertising, a game that Apple has yet to enter.  Still with eyeballs comes opportunity.  And it potentially could lead to possible e-commerce opportunities too.  That will be Apple's future growth opportunity...advanced advertising. 

The initial success of this new Apple TV box depends on just how cool the interface is, how ergonomic and easy it performs, how exclusive is the content that can run on it, how fast it functions, and how excited people are to try it and buy it.  That remains to be seen.  The potential is awesome.

As to the Cook comment that the future of TV is apps, I believe he is correct.  With content being enjoyed across apps like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, HBO GO, WatchESPN, and many more, content companies have already been positioning themselves for the app space.  Consumers are embracing these apps mostly because of the mobility and TV Everywhere approach that they offer.  And now we are asking what app are they watching that show on. 

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