Roku CEO unfazed by talk of new Apple, Amazon TV boxes

Apple TV Standing

With Amazon expected to unveil a new set-top box device next week, and Apple rumored to have a new TV product of its own in the wings, you have to wonder if the folks over at Roku are concerned at all about their business. Well if they are, they certainly aren’t showing it.

Roku CEO Anthony Wood joined Peter Kafka on stage last night for an interview at the inaugural Code/Media event, and he appeared unfazed by the news that Amazon will likely be encroaching on his turf. He also didn’t seem too worried about Apple’s future television plans…

Here are some highlights from the interview via Recode:

“Every year about this time, the Amazon box comes up that they’re about to launch. And the new Apple TV is about to launch … We’ve been competing with Apple TV for six years now, and every year, we’ve grown,” Wood told Kafka. ”We’re in the TV platform business. Our goal is to be the operating system for TV.”

“Apple TV is essentially an accessory for the iPad. They lose money, which is unusual for Apple,” he said Thursday, speaking at the Recode conference here. “If you’re losing money, why would you want to sell more?”

Interestingly enough, Apple describes the Apple TV as a success. At the company’s shareholders meeting, Tim Cook told investors that between hardware and content sales it’s now a $1 billion business, and he quipped that “it’s a little more difficult to call it a hobby these days.”

Apple TV (teaser 001)

As for its future plans for TV, a recent report from The Information claimed that Apple is moving forward with its revamped set-top box. The new device will be a full cable box replacement with the ability to run apps and games, with players using iOS devices as controllers.

Roku, for its part, recently launched the ‘Streaming Stick,’ a $50 Chromecast-like dongle capable of doing most of the things its larger set-top boxes can. Wood says the company’s goal is to be your future TV’s OS, and it has already inked deals with set-makers TCL and Hisense.