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Monday, November 26, 2007

Assessing the stagnant set-top box market

Tom Krazit of CNET has a good piece looking at the failure-to-launch of the Internet-connected set-top box sector. He focuses mainly on Apple TV (I wish there was more talk about others who've tried to bring Net-top boxes to market, like Akimbo, Vudu, TiVo, etc.)

Krazit writes:

    With Apple TV, Apple fulfilled its usual goal of coming up with something sleek and quiet that people wouldn't necessarily mind putting in their living rooms, and the device seems relatively easy to set up and use.

    But it doesn't come even close to fulfilling the promise of Internet-delivered video: the ability to watch anything I want, whenever I want it, without having to pay for all the useless channels I never watch. Nothing does yet, unfortunately, so I make do with the 250-plus channels I now get plus my digital video recorder.

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  • I think the focus on AppleTV is simply mistaken. Even as an Apple junkie, I have little interest in an Apple TV because the prices are simply too high. For most American cheapskates like me (who are used to getting TV for free), we really just want our TV in a more convenient form. My two set-top boxes are a Tivo (on which I watch TV and rent impulse mainstream movies from Unbox for about the same price that I used to rent DVDs from Blockbuster) and an xBox modified with the xBox Media Center, which I use to watch episodes of TV that I either missed for some reason or can't get (like currently-airing eps of "Doctor Who" from England — sorry, I just can't wait). I consider Apple TV to be in stealth mode at the moment; Apple needed to put something out just to establish a place in the market, but there's a lot of potential there that I believe the company will capitalize on when they can work out the right deals with the right content providers. Until then, Tivo and torents will hold me.

    By Blogger Christopher, at 10:45 PM  

  • By Blogger Admin, at 2:57 PM  

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