The latter could look like this -- Apple, for the time being, doesn't outfit the world with a new device. I don't buy the whole smartwatch rumor; that feels like pushing too hard to follow a market, something Apple doesn't typically do. The company focuses instead, in the near-term, on high-priced, high-margin devices with sales somewhere south of iPhone- and iPad-like numbers.
Tops in that style of pipeline has to be a new product called iTV (or something like that). Maybe iLiving Room. iTheater. Whatever. As usual,
John Martellaro gets it right in
Apple: Sizing Up the Critical Failure Points of the TV Industry
My guess is that Apple has been taking its sweet time with its TV project to not only build great hardware and software -- the next generation beyond the current Apple TV -- but to also figure out how to even better press the "I'm annoyed" buttons of the average TV viewer, like figuring out how to select the right component for input to the HDTV with a complicated remote. That's why some observers, including me, believe that Apple will integrate the display with the next generation Apple TV electronics.
This ties back to what Tim Cook said about a year ago now. Remember he talked about what a backward experience the living room is? How it really hasn't moved forward much in decades, at least relative to comparable technological advances?
If Apple wants to get $1,499 or $1,999 for a display-set top box combo, it's going to need to deliver. Same thing applies if it wants to work out a seemingly evil subsidy arrangement with cable and satellite companies like it has with wireless carriers. While these guys do not want to get burned like the telcos, they fully recognize the power of being able to offer current and prospective subscribers a premium Apple product at a reasonable (subsidized) price.
Time Warner Cable
(TWC - Get Report)
and the whole lot of providers being able to advertise free NFL Sunday Ticket or some sort of cable/Internet bundle
with an integrated Apple TV set (build to specification for each carrier) for something like $499.
would be dead in the water.
And Apple would continue to dominate only in a slightly different way.
Written by Rocco Pendola in New York City