As I explained in
Apple's Stock Could Still Double Even If it Doesn't Sell 156 Million iTVs
, this company is all about creating intuitive, innovative and alluring user experiences. It does not need to own content or even distribution to do this.
Maybe it could do a special side deal here or there on really prime stuff (e.g., EPL soccer or a sweet deal with the
for Sunday Ticket) or knock knuckles with
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and others by farming out some original programming, but there's not even a need for that.
All Apple really "needs" to do is give enough people a compelling reason to choose iTV over the many very good sub-$1,000 televisions already on the market. These less-expensive models don't do much, relative to what Apple will likely be able to pull off. They hook you up to the Internet and give you access to everybody's platform and content -- usually for a price. Great stuff, but hardly the end of innovation.
Tim Cook steps "back in time" in the living room because he merely pushes the power button and makes a selection. Outside of
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few companies have moved that load of living room boredom forward. That's what Apple can and will do.
I've seen too many Apple TV predictions. Guys like Munster telling us every other week they have a "scoop." That they talked to somebody in Korea or China, found a note on the beach in San Francisco or got tipped off by "somebody familiar with Apple's thinking" on the living room.
Heck, I can claim that I am "familiar with" somebody's thinking. Isn't that what we all do when we have opinions. Unless you're really tight with Steve Jobs or Tim Cook you have no idea what the heck Apple is thinking.
Your guess is as good as my "scoop."
--Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.