Posts Tagged: apple disney

Dec 09

Waiting for the real Apple TV

apple_tvHaving already upended two industries beyond computers (music and smartphones), Apple is now preparing to do battle with a classic bad guy: the cable industry.

Just yesterday the WSJ reported that Apple was in discussions with CBS and Disney. The story started rippling around the web, accompanied by images of Apple’s famous “hobby,” the Apple TV device. That’s a knee-jerk reflex to the words Apple and TV, but one that misses the point. The giant, industry-altering story here is not Apple TV — it’s simply iTunes TV.

Apple will follow its classic playbook. They’ll swoop into a new market and do a dramatically better job of making people happy. In this case, they will combine customization and accessibility to create something that makes way too much sense not to work.

Remember when you had to buy a whole album to get the two songs you really wanted? The iTunes Store fundamentally changed things — to the point where musicians had to rethink the way they make albums.

Apple will do the same thing for broadcast. Think of all the crappy shows you pay for, but never watch. Imagine subscribing only to the shows or networks that interest you, with some innovative ways to explore and sample new content — all while paying less than you currently do.

That would be tremendously cool in your living room (yes, using Apple TV). But the idea of an iTunes TV is a hundred times bigger. Because when you subscribe to TV via iTunes, you can access your favorite shows from anywhere — by computer, iPhone or the speculatively spectacular iTablet. You will be freed from the shackles of your cable box.

Look for iTunes TV to start with just a couple of names (like Disney and CBS), then branch out from there. Just as it did with the movie studios. And look for the cable companies to start looking extremely nervous.