Can The New Apple TV “Appify”, And Amplify, Your Business? Hyperbole aside, can the new Apple TV change the world? From what we’ve seen as the Giant team has explored the developer kit, reviewed the new specifications and experienced the new interface, the answer is “yes”. Today, but perhaps not for long, Apple TV runs a distant second place to Roku, grouped with Google and Amazon Fire to account for just 9.7% of all households. Roku, on the other hand, accounts for 9.7% by itself. What began as a combination device and service providing dedicated access to Netflix has grown into an expanding free-for-all of channels of every type and description. The original Apple TV debuted a closed ecosphere on which only the biggest entities could get real estate, mindshare and eyeballs. Versatility and Content Availability edged out the Apple brand, design and experience and, consequently, Roku’s open platform and free-wheeling publishing scheme have outpaced Apple TV in market penetration and channels. Until now… As one of the first developers of tvOS apps, (See IndieKid, available the day of launch), we couldn’t be more impressed and excited by what we’re seeing and experiencing. The new Apple TV delivers a huge potential opportunity for both content owners/distributors AND consumers, and, yes, has the potential to change the way that households are entertained, thrilled and managed. No longer restricted to Fortune 500 media companies like HBO and ESPN, now even the most specific of content owners can get in the game, build apps and publishing content to audiences. Armed with the capacity to integrate the user experience, drawing together so many facets of the Apple experience and delivering access to any major (and minor) content service available, the new Apple TV has the promise of centralizing and unifying the home entertainment experience. Iteractivity has finally been tied to video in a way that feels comfortable and empowering. (Hello, Siri!) Forbes provided some key insights in a Oct. 29 post, Apple TV Aims to ‘Appify’ Television with Games, Content and Comics:
The hotly anticipated debut of the new Apple TV represents a big step forward from simple streaming device to full-fledged platform, including an app store to give users access to all kinds of specialized content through their TVs....Apple senior VP of Internet software and services Eddy Cue described the company’s strategy as, essentially, the appification of TV, encouraging the audience (and developers) to think of channels as apps, and integrating new modes of interaction and discoverability like Apple’s Siri into how we engage with content on the biggest screens in our homes.
This development is not unexpected. In Giant President’ Jeff Stabenau’s field report from CES 2014, he noted,
The future of watching TV…and it’s fair to argue we are already in the future…will consist of selecting which channel app you want to watch and calling it up. There will no longer be a distinction between a channel-specific app, a network app, a bundled group of content, or your Time-Warner box. They will all be options to watch on your big, bright new UHD screen. Netflix, Amazon, Apple and Roku will all sit next to an ESPN and HBO app, and right alongside a FiosTV app or TW Cable app. We will choose what content we want to watch, when we want to watch it. Choice, control…these trends will come into full fruition.
Can the new Apple TV amplify your business? Whether you’re a game company, content distributor or even a home automation start-up, the answer, again, is ‘yes’. For any company wishing to deliver a new OTT service, and get in on the ground floor of a defining moment in home entertainment, now is the time to seize the day. As Apple TV ‘s launch rolls into the 2015 holiday season and beyond, we expect tvOS development will be a focus of Giant Interactive and a growing area of our business. Drawing from our iOS development experience and our expertise in video and interface development, we’ve already begun working on a couple new projects which we’ll share more about in the coming weeks. Exciting times await, and we’re moving…take a Giant step with us.