Let’s call a spade, a spade. A rose by any other name is still a rose, right? A turd in the salad is still a salad with something you don’t want. So it is with Apple’s official hobby product, the Apple TV.
There’s a reason Apple TV is a hobby. It’s not really ready for primetime. What about all those channels? Seriously? The saving grace for Apple TV is really AirPlay for iPhone and iPad, not apps.
It’s high time to call it what it is. Apple TV is closer to dud than success. Don’t get me wrong. I have the latest Apple TV. I like Apple TV, but only for AirPlay because that’s all it does that’s worth consideration.
Wait. I know what you’re thinking. ‘Kate, what about all those apps on Apple TV?‘ Seriously? Have you tried to use them?
What do those apps give you that you can’t get already in your iPhone or iPad? Many of the content apps require you to have a cable TV account before viewing, so what’s the point?
iTunes? iTunes Movies? iTunes Music? I have that on my iPhone and iPad already. Ditto for Netflix, HuluPlus, et al. YouTube? Flickr? Vimeo? They’re nice, but hardly worth cutting the cable TV cord.
Apple TV is simple to use, of course, and oozes Apple’s design esthetic at every click. Even most cable TV remotes can be programmed to add Apple TV remote functions.
The real claim to fame with Apple TV is AirPlay, the feature that lets you stream whatever is on your Mac, iPhone, or iPad onto your widescreen TV, and it’s impressive.
Change The Name Already
For the most part, AirPlay just works and makes it child’s play to move whatever you’re watching on iPhone or iPad to the big screen.
If Apple isn’t going to do something serious with Apple TV, then change the name to AirPlay already.
Apple TV has needs. First on the list is content. Real content that doesn’t require you to have a cable TV account already. Apple TV needs more content apps.
Second, where is Siri? Voice recognition works decently on my iPhone and iPad, so why not let it work with each device to control using Apple TV?
Third, if Apple can’t get itself into bed with the balkanized television industry to provide streaming content on demand (all of it, not just the trash the networks want us to watch… Hello? Reruns?), then put DVR capability into Apple TV.
As is probably the case with most of us, I really want Apple TV to succeed. To date, about 13-million have been sold, so it’s not a trivial number of users (most of those the past year or two). But it’s obvious that Apple TV is a hobby that’s not getting much attention from Apple.
Note to CEO Tim Cook. If you can’t make Apple TV an industry disruptive innovation, then change the name to AirPlay.