Apple TV seems to be the poster child for TV industry disruption, but there’s not much disrupting going on. Apple TV, even with a billion dollar year in 2013, remains something of a hobby for Apple. If Apple can’t do to TV what needs to be done how can Amazon blaze a trail with what amounts to Apple TV Plus.
What’s In A Name?
Amazon’s entry into the nascent TV add-on market pioneered by Apple’s TV way back in the day is called Fire TV.
This small, dark plastic box comes with a remote, an HDMI port, a USB port, optical audio, and an Ethernet port.
Sound familiar so far?
Amazon Fire TV lets you stream TV shows, movies, music, photos, buy online, and play games.
Still sounds familiar, right?
Just like Apple’s increasingly popular Apple TV, Amazon’s answer to Apple TV’s billion dollar year is also priced at $99.
Fire TV plays 1080p HD streaming video and connects to Amazon’s cloud storage service so you can keep your music, TV shows, and photos safely stored online.
Still sounds familiar to me.
Ladies and gentlemen, guys and gals, girls and boys, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos just introduced the new $99 Apple TV Plus.
Fire TV would be a good name if there was actually any spark or flames or even some smoke.
Instead, as differentiation, Fire TV comes with a few apps not found on Apple TV, some hardware upgrades which sound great but don’t mean much, and a remote control with a built-in microphone so navigating can be done with voice control.
How is that entire package anything but Apple TV Plus but with a different name?