AppleTV Marketing Push + Advertising + New Name?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by ipedro, Sep 21, 2008.

  1. ipedro macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    It's known that :apple:TV is considered a hobby for Apple but I don't think that was the original intention. I just finished watching the Macworld 2007 Keynote, and aside from the major time dedicated to the introduction of iPhone, :apple:TV was a big focus at 2007's biggest Apple show.

    There was even an ad that I had completely forgotten about: :apple:TV ad.

    :apple:TV was undoubtedly a big part of Macworld 2007, and Apple had high hopes for it.

    Have a look at this slide from that keynote:


    That one picture says a lot.

    I don't think that it met those expectations fully and then the NBC setback compounded the problem. Apple then began calling it a "hobby" and removed it from its stool leg metaphore. I'm not suggesting that Apple is giving up however. All indications – including Take 2 and the iPhone/iPod remote – show that Apple is letting it lay low behind the scenes while the conditions are met before a renewed marketing push.

    I think that by next year, as HD TV programming becomes the norm, as content becomes more readily available, and as many people begin buying HD widescreen TVs for the 2009 digital transition, Apple will again set its sights on capturing the living room.

    I'm a big fan of this device and hold a lot of faith in its capabilities and ultimate success. I'm looking forward to seeing how it develops, and how Apple will promote it.

    I think part of that should come with a new name. I don't think that Apple did their best when they went from iTV to AppleTV. Either name doesn't have that "iPod" cachet. iPod has become a ubiquitous word synonymous with portable music. Apple should aim at doing the same for :apple:TV with a new creative moniker.

    I think it would be a fun exercise to think up a new name for :apple:TV. I'd suggest that TV be dropped out of the name entirely. Or perhaps Apple can include it fully in the iPod lineup by calling it iPodTV.

    Put your creative hats on and suggest some names. :)
  2. jaw04005 macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    I also share your enthusiasm for Apple TV.

    Apple should buy the trademarks to iTV and rename the device back. They should also hammer out a subscription model with their network partners and reintroduce the device as a competitor to both cable TV and TiVo.

    Imagine paying some $29.99/month for 10 or so of your favorite shows in HD. You could swap the shows out monthly a la Netflix.

    At this point, I was would settle for a software update that brings the Apple TV software up to date with iTunes 8.
  3. Volante macrumors regular

    Feb 8, 2008
    Compared to the the Ipod Apple TV is very limited. Ipod handles the most popular sound format - mp3. Currently, the most used codec for video, DivX/Xvid, is not supported by the Apple TV. Given time, the h264 format might become popular enough. Unfortunly for Apple TV, the container of people's choise seems to be mkv.

    Also, would be interesting to see if and when they release TV and Movies for non-native english speaking countries. (And no, most of us don't watch dubbed TV Shows - at least in Scandinavia)
  4. NT1440 macrumors G4


    May 18, 2008
    apple did recognize the "failures" of the appletv, it obviously hadnt lived up to their hope. that was evident by "we think we got it right this time around" stated by steve when the revision came around.

    also, HD will not be the standard for at least a few years. Digital =/= HD.
  5. bergmef macrumors 6502a

    Sep 20, 2005
    Southeast of Baltimore, USA
    With a marketing push, I would like to see one new thing added (if the network gods would allow it), tv show rentals. Make the price half of the buy cost. My comcast bill would drop by 2/3 because all I would have is the internet connection.

    OK, maybe two things. Add back to my mac so I can use a wireless keyboard and mouse.
  6. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601


    Feb 10, 2004
    Echoing some of the other sentiments here, they really need to attack the pricing of the content. I think the way to do that is bundling. I know this is antithetical to the ATV model, but here me out.

    Let content providers bundle shows together for a lower price. Better, let them sell "subsctriptions" to all their content for a single price. If I could pay $80 for access to every NBC show in 2008, for example, I would be more likely to buy that than paying $70 for Heros and 30 Rock season passes. (Also, by subscription, I mean basically pre-buying everything they release, not renting it).

    Other options would be rental schemes for TV. Maybe offer rentals for TV seasons after they are complete. Buy only until the final episode airs, then buy/rent options. Maybe $9.99 to rent a season. Or, ad-supported (again, antithetical to the ATV, but an option still). I'd be happy to watch shows with ads if they were free (or very very cheap... like a flat membership fee for access to everything with ads).

    They also need to make HD the standard, not an upgrade option. Everything should be HD only, and include a free iPod touch/iPhone sized version. And it needs to be the current SD price - $2 TV shows, $3 movie rentals/$10-15 purchases. There's no way there's $1 worth of extra work going into an HD TV show or HD rental, it's just a premium upcharge. Thta needs to go away, HD is no longer a premium product. It's the standard.

    I love my ATV, but I'm not at all sold on the iTMS for video, which I think is holding the ATV back, and that I also think was responsible for a lot of the iTunes success (the iTMS music and podcast store, that is).
  7. ipedro thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    ^ I agree mostly with your post, and I did bring up the suggestion in another thread that there should be Network Passes: You'd buy an NBC monthly pass and be able to access all their content.

    While I agree that all HD would be nice, and should become the standard, I'm well aware that the files are very large and that bandwidth costs money, hence the extra dollar.

    Getting back into the spirit of this thread – Market, Advertising and new name – I think that Apple should position :apple:TV aggressively as a competitor to cable/satellite. It should go head on like it does with Microsoft with the Get a Mac ads.

    In order to propagate :apple:TV, Apple should include a simplified :apple:TV system in all of its Cinema Displays and should approach partners with the concept. While I'm not an engineer, I can imagine that if they can fit all the functionality of :apple:TV into an iPod touch and a device as small as an iPod nano, one can argue that Apple can build an :apple:TV chip the size of a nano, add 8GB of memory for effective streaming and include it in popular widescreen TVs.

    The original :apple:TV ad is ideal. It shows you that you now watch and listen to content on your computer, goes on to show iPod and then introduces :apple:TV. It's a smart move to compare it to the wildly successful iPod and demonstrate it all as one ecosystem where :apple:TV fits right in.

    As for the name, I haven't come up with something catchy yet, but iVod (internet Video on demand) would make sense and would tie it into the iPod – as an iPod equivalent for your living room.
  8. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601


    Feb 10, 2004

    The size jump for iTunes SD to HD is fairly minimal. It's goes from about 400mb per hour to 700mb per hour, if I recall. Maybe 400 to 800. Somewhere around that. Bandwidth is cheap, these days, though. Especially when you are buying as much of it as Apple is. It's certainly not $1 for 400mb of bandwidth.

    Second, the idea of putting an ATV into a cinema display is... well, kind of pointless don't you think? I mean, there's no reason to do it. If you were going to use it as a TV it's a huge waste of money. A 30" cinema display is massively expensive compared to a 30" HDTV and the extra resolution in the Apple product is wasted because there's no source to feed it. If you were going to put an ATV in it and then connect it to your computer... well, again, no real need for it. It's already connect to a computer that can access all your media without the help of an ATV. What would you use it for?

    Now, lisencing the ATV software to TV makers would work, as you could build the unit into an actual TV and get some real use out of it. I'm not sure who Apple would partner with, though. They seem very protective of their brand and letting other manufacturers share Apple's "mindshare" is something they've done very rarely, and it's not asted long when they did (HP iPods, for example).
  9. ipedro thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    Good point about the Cinema Displays. As for a partner, Sony would be ideal as Apple has collaborated with them before (and had them on stage at MacWorld) but Sony has its own proprietary online content delivery system. Sharp Aquos seems to be leading the HD TV revolution in sales (I've bought two already!). They could make a great partner.

    The system would be a simplified version of :apple:tv. Same user interface for music, video and photos but no HDD. A large HDD, Flickr, YouTube and other extras could be premium abilities that would encourage the purchase of an external :apple:tv.

    Having :apple:tv already on board with new TVs would put it in many homes and get the critical mass necessary to get the ball rolling on this device. That's the principal marketing strategy that I would suggest, followed by regular advertising as has been done effectively with iPod ads and the Get a Mac commercials.
  10. Macinposh macrumors 6502a

    Jun 7, 2006
    How about if apple would launch some content outsade the states for starters...those miscreants...

    Oh,yes,uk and canuckistan have some but thats about it..

    In EU alone there is about double of possible customers than in states and practically no content aviable.Let alone rest of the world.
    Nice business model there,apple..

    Yes,negotiating contracts is hard,I can only imagine, but they should have done that before they design a system let alone launch it.

    Now people outside the U.S and A have S.Jobs false promises and a 400€ brick.

    Well,in all honesty, transfering my own dvd/video archive and music to a central archive has eased my pain,but still...weeps...not even video rentals!!!
  11. Galley macrumors 65816


    Mar 24, 2008
    How about FREE ad-supported TV programming? They've already got the delivery system in place; it's called "podcasts". Subscribe to your favorite TV show, and it will download automatically. People would go nuts for that! :)
  12. duoart macrumors newbie

    Sep 13, 2007
    No, No NO!!!

    Apple still does not get it. The killer app for AppleTV is a digital "slide projectior" cum photo library. Apple should consider adding a simple multi-card reader to the ATV and making it more like this:

    Sony has gone nowhere with this product because it's a one trick pony. ATV, on the other hand, is capable of *SO* much more. Millions of people have digital cameras and lack the ability to see all the photos they've taken. Some are even buying more memory cards once they fill up because they don't know how to download them to their computers! HDTV sets are the biggest and nicest displays in the home yet few people can use it for their digital photos.

    One TV ad with and older couple (Grandparents) looking at a digital photo album on their Apple TV would sell BOATLOADS of product. Trust me. Now that there is actual thumbnail capability within the photo display function, the next step is to eliminate the dependence on iTunes for photos. Add a USB card reader and software and you've got a killer product! allow photos to be backed up to CD or DVD via iTunes and you're done.

    Video from the internet is not the answer! You're competing with On Demand TV from the cable companies and Netflix The killer app is photography! WAKE UP APPLE!!!!!
  13. ipedro thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    tv 3.0

    I posted this thought on 3.0 in another thread, but thought it would be quite relevant to this one as well:

    While I don't think we'll see any new hardware coming to the tv any time soon, I find that there is reason to believe that new software will be revealed at either of two points in the next few months: a pre-Christmas event or at MacWorld.

    The best indication that the tv team is hard at work on a big project with a tight schedule is the delay we saw this month in updating tv to include the features of iTunes 8. All iPod and iPhones across the line received the update instantly. tv did not.

    There doesn't seem to be a concerted effort at maintaining the current Take 2 version. Because I don't see Apple abandoning the tv platform because of its strategic importance to the continued success of the iTunes model, this can only mean that the team is working on a separate version of the software.

    Expect tv 3.0 within 3 months or less.
  14. ipedro thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    To continue the idea of an upcoming marketing push and possibly a new name, I would suggest that Apple have a good look at what Boxee is doing.

    While not featuring the perfect UI, the functionality of Boxee is a large improvement over tv without a doubt.

    tv 3.0 should contain the connectivity of Boxee. Perhaps it could become modular with "apps" that could be added such as, weather widget, CNN feeds, etc.

    Boxee's implementation of internet feeds is remarkable and a big step in the direction that tv should be headed.

    The social networking aspect of Boxee is ingenius and very likely where "TV" will be headed in the digital distribution age. It's the digital version of talking to your friends the day after you watched a show you think they should watch.

    I love how there's a main page where this information is gathered and how it requires little or no effort to share what you're watching with your friends.

    Perhaps, Apple should just outright buy Boxee and rename tv, Boxee.

    While Boxee is on the right track though, I'm not too fond of their video, music and photo library implementation. I like how iTunes manages it all within its library and how tv serves it up to you.

    In short, let's see tv 3.0 with

    - Internet audio/video feeds (CNN videos, YouTube,
    - Widgets (weather, stocks, webcams, etc)
    - Social Networking via MobileMe integration
    - A return to the tv 1.0 UI with large beautiful icons to select the mode of entertainment (movies, tv, music, photos, internet feeds, widgets, settings)
  15. Thanatoast macrumors 65816


    Dec 3, 2002
    no ads! no, no, no!

    maybe access to each network's website or something, but the second Apple sells tv shows with ads in them they kill the iTMS. might as well watch tv at that point.
  16. PcBgone macrumors 6502


    Feb 3, 2008
    Apple will never get a dime from me as long as i have Free OTA access to the same shows. Why should I pay a 1.99 per episode when the only advantage is losing 10-15 mins of commercials? I dont watch the commercials anyway, but to me its not worth 2 bux per episode to save 10-15 mins of commercials. Id rather it be free with ads. I get HD OTA why do I need to pay for it?

    How about changing the name to the iView. Since effectively you are "viewing" it on supposedly a larger display...
  17. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    I do agree that the Apple TV needs more attention. However, it fits my needs perfectly and does everything and more.

    I have a huge collection of TV Shows and Movies - all available with the click of a button. Any new TV Shows that come out, I download or record using my Mac, convert and ready to watch on the Apple TV. Rip any new DVD's I buy and add to the collection.

    When I have mates round, and we finished watching a TV Show or Movie off the Apple TV, the YouTube feature is great.

    It does everything I could want it to do (apart from being able to actually record itself).
  18. ipedro thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    MacWorld 2009?

    I'm getting the impression that 2009 is going to be a big year for tv...

    All of Apple's main products are seeing major revisions in the past month or so. iPod, iPhone, MacBooks, Cinema Displays and apparently iMac's in November. What does this leave for MacWorld 2009?

    I imagine that quick announcements will be made on availability of the 17" MacBook Pro and an extensive look at Snow Leopard. It's also possible that we might get iLife and iWork 2009 but none of those will deliver a major punch at the headlines of news services around the world.

    This leaves room for tv to become the focus. This is the next major market for Apple that has yet to reach major success with the main stream. With the announcement of an all HD TV lineup by the major studios and reaching the 200M TV Show download mark – doubling in a year what took 3 to reach – the living room is the logical next step for Apple and iTunes.

    I think we'll see the announcement of new redesigned Mac Mini's with full tv functionality, a bump of tv's HDD's to 500GB, integration of tv into the bigger Cinema Displays and an update to tv firmware 3.0.
  19. pagansoul macrumors 65816


    Aug 10, 2006
    Since I have most of my favorite TV programs on DVD and the time to rip the shows on to my computer, :apple:TV works for me. My problem is the current shows, which I watch via Hulu on my computer which I do not want to attach to my HDTV in the livingroom. The best route may be to get a mini but :apple:TV works so well with my rips.
  20. ipedro thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    Apple Pushing tv on iTunes

    I noticed this today:


    I've never seen Apple push tv like this since it was labeled a "hobby".

    Initially, there was a TV ad and in store advertising, but once tv was deemed a side project, I haven't seen any marketing whatsoever. They simply just made it available.

    Could this mean a renewed push? Trying to move remaining stock? Speculate away! :D
  21. bijou macrumors regular


    Sep 7, 2007
    Is putting that on the ITMS front page a major 'push'? Maybe if they'd put out some commercials it would be--IMO they should be marketing this much more than they are now.
  22. NightStorm macrumors 68000

    Jan 26, 2006
    Whitehouse, OH
    Based on the number of people who see the main iTMS page everday, it's definitely something... not quite sure I'd call it a major push though.
  23. veedow macrumors newbie


    Dec 19, 2008
    Chicago suburbs
    I agree with iPedro.

    ATV should incorporate a lot of the functionality that Boxee offers. Can’t say enough, how well Boxee performs on the ATV! If you have an ATV, and haven’t tried it, I highly recommend Boxee, until Apple implements these features. Very easy installer, and they are constantly updating it.

    One feature, Boxee offers, that I can’t believe ATV doesn’t do already is to enable a Visualizer, when playing music. How hard would this be for Apple? They have the Slideshow as an option. Another feature I’d really like to see is Safari. Apple should rename ATV to iMedia.

    If anyone is intersted... you can check out my blog about 2ATVs vs. the Mini @
  24. ipedro thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    Who called it a "major push"? I speculated that it could be a renewed push.
  25. Revelation78 macrumors 68000


    Dec 18, 2008
    North Carolina
    I agree with those that state :apple:TV should be more like boxee. I do disagree with changing the name. If you ask any non-Mac enthusiast they have no idea what an :apple:TV is.

    I also agree it's due to lack of advertising, though I imagine :apple: elected to drop the advertising for now knowing that the :apple:TV platform was going to take off just yet. They instead focused on Al iMacs/Macbooks and of course everyone's favorite iPhone.

    I do believe now that :apple: has "opened" the doors to the masses with the release of the iPhone, it can use that momentum to achieve sales in the :apple:TV department.

    To be really successful, IMHO, the process to add your own movies would need to be simplified. Most Mac enthusiast know how to use Handbrake for instance; your average joe does not.

    If :apple: made it easy by ripping from a DvD/other source through iTunes to :apple: TV/iPhone, I believe it would have greater effect than some other ideas that have been posted.

    I also think that the social features of Boxee would be huge to the :apple: TV. I also think :apple: could take it to another level, through Facebook/Twitter, etc...

    :apple: should also make a low-end model specially for standard TV's. Not everyone owns an HDTV. I think :apple: has closed itself off from a good portion of the market for about another 2 years. That's how long I think it would take for HDTV's to be in a great majority of homes these days.

    It would also give added sales once that person/family upgraded TV's, hey we need the HD :apple: TV. (The one we use today, or newer variant) I do see :apple: making some changes to :apple:TV as it stands at Macworld. It may be just a software update as one suggested.

    I also think :apple: TV is giving just enough life support to the :apple: TV to keep it alive until movie downloads become more commonplace. If you take a look back six months ago, there were what, two options to download movies for your TV. Now you have a lot more, as people become more familiar with it, they'll also look at what options are available to get that content.

    :apple: has a chance to step it up in the next few months to make the ultimate experience for home delivery of content. If it can do that, you'll see an :apple: TV in almost every household.

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