According to Forrester Research, the key competitive advantage of Apple’s rumored television set – often referred to in media reports as the iTV – won’t be the television part per se.
Instead, one analyst thinks Apple should sell the world’s first non-TV TV, which would entail convincing folks they need a new screen in their lives.
It should enable the ultimate portability in that one should be able to hang it on any wall where the family congregates for the usual activities and of course it would run apps and represent the ultimate realization of everything Apple stands for…
Forrester Research analyst James McQuivey explains in a blog post that Apple should not try to just replace your current TV set with own branded screen.
For starters, TV upgrade cycle typically takes a whopping seven years.
Yes, seven years.
Besides, content is still controlled by monopolists unlikely to give Apple the keys to their content archives.
So, what’s the deal with iTV then?
Here’s me putting on the record what I’ve been telling clients behind closed doors for over a year: Apple should sell the world’s first non-TV TV. Instead of selling a replacement for the TV you just bought, Apple should convince millions of Apple fans that they need a new screen in their lives.
His thinking echoes a sentiment we’ve been hearing a lot by iDB commenters in that Apple has little chance of succeeding in the cut-throat television biz if the iTV ends up being yet another screen with a novel user interface.
So, what’s up with this iHub thing?
Call it the iHub, a 32-inch screen with touch, gesture, voice, and iPad control that can be hung on the wall wherever the family congregates for planning, talking, or eating — in more and more US homes, that room is the dining room or eat-in kitchen. By pushing developers to create apps that serve as the hub of family life – complete with shared calendars, photo and video viewers, and FaceTime for chatting with grandma – this non-TV TV could take off, ultimately positioning Apple to replace your 60-inch set once it’s ready to retire.
Now, this makes sense.
Apple positioned the Mac in the early-1990s as a hub for your digital life, expanding on this strategy to much success with the iLife suite of digital lifestyle apps and, nowadays, with iCloud.
So, the iTV should be a portable 32-inch window to your content like the thing depicted in the top image and not a 50-inch beast such as this concept render?
The iHub, of course, would be the ultimate realization of everything Apple stands for.
If you think about it, my proposal takes advantage of everything Apple has going for it: Its base of super-engaged customers, its bevy of hungry developers, its ability to open our minds to the possibility of post-PC computing form factors, and its spectacular track record with generating elegant experiences that teach us to do things we didn’t know we needed. In fact, I want this so bad I can almost taste it.
He is convinced Apple will release such a product sooner than later.
That’s why, if what Apple releases later in the year falls short of my admittedly high expectations and I will probably come off as less impressed than others. I’ll be comparing whatever the company eventually sells to a glorious and welcome revolution that only Apple could incite.
I’d love to have a beautiful display, light enough to carry around and hang on any wall, but still big enough to enjoy my content and run gorgeous, touch-enabled apps on a 32-inch canvas.
Any iOS device could act as a software remote and be a bridge to Siri functionality.
I know analysts are wrong more often than not, but we haven’t heard such an interesting take on the iTV meme before and decided to share it with you for the sake of discussion.
We’re down in the comments.