Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

Summary: Apple reportedly will team up with Netflix to offer streaming videos to Steve Jobs' ongoing hobby. Big deal. Netflix is already in your entertainment center.

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TOPICS: Hardware, Apple, Mobility
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Apple reportedly will team up with Netflix to offer streaming videos to Steve Jobs' ongoing hobby. According to Bloomberg, Apple will show off a new Apple TV and Netflix will be bundled. Bloomberg adds:

Programming from Netflix may enhance the appeal of a product that has been called a “hobby” by Apple executives and hasn’t resonated widely with consumers. The Cupertino, California-based company is due to release a $99 version of Apple TV, $130 less than the current model, people familiar with the plans said last week.

If you assume this report is true, it's hard to see Netflix being much of an Apple TV savior despite all the oohs and ahhs you're going to hear. Why? Netflix is already in your entertainment center---perhaps multiple times.

Here's a list of Netflix partners:

  • Microsoft's Xbox 360;
  • Sony's Playstation 3;
  • Nintendo's Wii;
  • Internet connected TVs (most of them);
  • Blu-ray players;
  • TiVo;
  • Roku digital players.

And I'm probably missing a few. Simply put, Netflix embedded on an Apple TV is the price of admission to get into your living room. Apple needs a Netflix deal more than Netflix does. To its credit, Netflix is everywhere so there will have to be something else to juice Apple TV sales.

Related: Apple, Google TV: Does Pay as You Go Make Dollars and Sense?

Topics: Hardware, Apple, Mobility

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21 comments
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  • I believe you may have missed Windows 7's Media Center

    as with a Netflix membership you can watch movies right from your computer without the need of AppleTV.
    Tim Cook
    • i think you have missed the point of an appleTV..

      @Mister Spock.. appleTV allows you to watch movies from online without the need of a computer (bass akwards of what you seem to want to do).. people have rejected the computer in the living room time and time again (not the geeks on tech forum, but regular people.. you know the other 99% of society).. no one wants that.. apparently even MS understand that and that's why they produce media extenders
      doctorSpoc
      • You just don't get it. The point is that I can watch TV anywhere I want. If

        @doctorSpoc
        rrogacki@...
      • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

        @doctorSpoc
        Appletv is a computer. just locked down so you can not do anything else with it
        rparker009
    • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

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      I LOVE
      lincc263
    • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

      http://elurl.com/o9d
      I LOVE
      lincc263
  • Does anyone have numbers for the Apple TV so far?

    How many have sold over these past few years and at what profit margin? I'd like to know myself cause I keep hearing it's a failure but I haven't been presented with any numbers. Does it sell at a loss? Does it make a profit? If so how much per unit? How many have sold to date?

    Pagan jim
    James Quinn
    • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

      @James Quinn
      So you want the financial truth regarding Apple Tv? You feel your entitled to the truth. I'm sorry, but Larry Dignan says you can't handle the truth.

      But to be fair to Larry, I've never read about specific Apple TV sale numbers from any source.

      As an owner of an Apple TV that was purchased when they first became available, I suspect the sale numbers are just enough to break even or return a small profit. (I say that because Apple has historically never been shy about terminating a product that does not return a profit.). By the way, my Apple TV has proven to be a very dependable accessory over the years. But it's way past time for a second generation model.
      kenosha77a
    • estimates

      @James Quinn
      i read estimates from analysts based on supply checks (well, you probably know how reliable they are) of 4 to 6 million sold since introduction. appletv not being a success is just a meme reproduced in the blogosphere. the same blogosphere that falls for amazon's pr bs that the kindle is a huge success without giving any numbers. i would assume that it is a profitable product with the usual 35% margin (otherwise they would have killed it long ago), but surely not as successful as other apple products.
      banned from zdnet
  • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

    Indeed. But I think you're knocking the wrong rumor. Apple are streaming this event. Why? Well I think that the streaming itself is actually a technology demonstration. Showing how well the stuff that they have put in place scales. Notice they are not demoing in an current format but for Snow Leopard, and OS devices only. I think the presentation itself is also a demonstration.

    So poo-poo the Netflix deal, because you are right. But I think by picking on this small part of the current noise circulating around the Internet you are missing the bigger picture.
    jgpmolloy
    • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

      @john@...

      You're speaking as if streaming is a "new thing". It's not. There's nothing novel about that, nor would it be compelling as far as selling a product.

      The novelty of streaming video over the Internet is ancient history - pioneered by Real in the late 90's.

      Today, it's all about content.

      -M
      betelgeuse68
      • ignorant?

        @betelgeuse68 <br>HTTP Live Streaming is a very big deal and yes, streaming the keynote live is definitely a showcase of what the new technology can do. <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTTP_Live_Streaming" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTTP_Live_Streaming</a>
        banned from zdnet
    • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

      Why is HTTP Live Streaming a big deal? Apple has QuickTime over RTSP. Oh, but I forget...iPhone/iPad does not support QuickTime RTSP. So, not only are you deprived of Flash, you are also deprived of QuickTime RTSP. Nice going, Apple. When will you obsolete HTTP Live Streaming?
      reng2010
  • RE: Netflix isn't going to save Apple TV

    I agree that Netflix is the price of admission into the living room. The idea that I'm going to pay $5/movie for any service when a single use would be 30% of what I pay for an entire month of Netflix which already gives me unlimited streaming and disc viewing is to put it bluntly, "a joke". <br><br>The value proposition of the Apple TV has been to date questionable. Given that the Playstation3 alone allows me to stream Netflix, game, stream music off my PC (via DLNA), watch Hulu/CBS/Comedy Central/PBS/Others (via PlayOn), play BluRays, watch Hulu+, etc., etc., etc. <br><br>In short, Apple's product would need to be truly amazing and given the competition, I don't see it.<br><br>I agree with Jobs' view that the "TV business" for Apple is still largely a "hobby". I don't see that changing with the new product UNLESS the ability to run apps is truly compelling, but I doubt it. That's because developers will want to charge me for the iPhone, iPad AND now iTV version of their apps and I have to say "No thanks" to that proposition. For example, upon the iPad's release there were suddenly "HD" versions of various apps which of course were more expensive even though in some cases the only thing that changed was bumping up the resolution of the app to the iPad's native resolution, e.g., Plants vs. Zombies.<br><br>-M
    betelgeuse68
    • c'mon.. let's be real.. netflix has lots of crappy old movies..

      @betelgeuse68 .. a small asortment of new movies that are only available for a sort time to steam.. they have TV shows but only the current series etc.. i just finished watching 6 years of LOST the past six months.. can't do that on netflix streaming.. iTunes has absolutely everything under the sun at your finger tips.. netflix, like most other streamed movie services also doesn't have ability to play dolby digital 5.1 surround sound... that's a non-starter for me right there.. most movies suck without surround sound.

      netflix is on every box in the living room.. yes.. but neflix hasn't been teamed up with the biggest online re-seller of music and video on the planet before.. no!
      doctorSpoc
  • I have my HTPC.

    I can already stream Netflix to my TV using my computer. :)

    Unfortunately, when it comes to Windows Media Center, I can start up Netflix and choose a movie just fine, but when I get to play the movie, Windows Vista SP2 tells me that Windows Media Center stops working and I don't seem to be getting help when I do a Google search for my problem. Even if I update Windows and keep them up to date (A Problem Reports and Solutions window came up, but it's useless even though it tells me to go online to get updates like if I'm using Windows XP), Windows Media Center can still crash and spit out the same error message telling me that Windows Media Center stopped working. My way of thinking about this tells me that there must be an update that causes Netflix/Windows Media Center to misbehave in such a way that I can't watch a TV episode or a movie in Windows Media Center, but as a consumer, I'm not expecting to intensely test an update to make sure every application is working.

    So far, Silverlight and Netflix Instant Watch works in IE 8, Firefox 3.6, and Google Chrome (latest version). I really don't think that reinstalling Silverlight and/or Netflix plugin in Windows Media Center will solve a problem. I've done this in the past before I reinstall Windows Vista or by creating a temporary Windows Administrator account, moved important files to the temp account (except the AppData folder), delete my main account and all its folders, re-add my main account, move everything back to where it was, and then delete my temp account. After so many steps, which is very aggravating, Netflix works in Windows Media Center.

    I'm not sure if it's an update that causes Windows Media Center to stop working or which files causes a misbehavior (pretty much inside the AppData folder) when I try to watch a Netflix movie in Windows Media Center (remember, I can select the movie, since the plugin works fine).
    Grayson Peddie
  • Oh ya, Apple TV. It's magical TV, revolutionary product, blah blah blah

    Tomorrow we're all going to watch one more time SJ preaching the Apbible about Apple TV or iTV or iTouchVision or iTouchTV or iTeleTouch or iTouchTelevision or iTVTouch or just iTV.<br><br>He's going to tell the same thing he told about iPad, it's a revolutionary, its magical, it's streaming is going to be the first in the world (they dont stream to Windows cos they know iTunes was the worst s/w developed in personal computer history in decades), unbelievable price, the best way to experience video or TV, thousands of Apps can be run on your TV (oops that's huge).<br><br>Anyway, it'll go out of stock (ofcourse dont' ask that question, they've sent only 10 units per store), you'll get a sold out news thru WSJ by noon.<br><br>So, what SJ is going to launch tomorrow.<br><br>It's as simple it is, a small hardware box like Roku which runs iTunes, runs ontop of a iOS light version for TV/HDTV/LCD TV/LED TV.<br><br>Oh that's huge, first of it's kind in the world. Let's buy it.
    jinishans
    • yeah, cause we know that iPads weren't going to sell...

      @jinishans - there's nothing to it... what would i use it for? well seems like coming up on 4 million people in two months found found a use for it... LMAO... i use mine for 90% of the computing i do around the house.<br><br>also where are all the competitors? where is the HP Slate that Balmer was waving around.. looks like they saw 10hrs of video.. that's video, not just typical use.. pure video.. and this has been confirmed by many, many reviewers as being conservative.. iOS for iPad which has been tuned and tweeked specifically to take advantage of the larger screen of a tablet (scroll panels, toolbars, floating panels etc).. thousands of apps written specifically for iOS for iPad taking advantage of the touch tablet OS's GUI elements.. and they went running for the hills...<br><br>android is still a phone OS with no special tweeks allowing it to take advantage of large screens.. apps are simply blown up phone apps.. this is a joke.. android tablets are simply not ready for prime time with out android being updated for tablets.. windows 7 tablets will be too battery hungry.. you get maybe 2-3 hrs of movie playing time out of a netbook.. one movie.. that's a joke and the OS is not designed for touch..<br><br>if the iPad is such a joke where are the competing devices.. any large company should have just been able to whip one up in a few month given how pathetic and mediocre the iPad is right.. so where are all these competing product.. maybe the iPad is a little bit more magical than you think.. just the battery life on a device that thin and light is a technical marvel.. you don't understand that?

      oh, and i forgot.. when the apple product that you ridicule sells like hot cakes.. it's not because it's a good product that meets it's market's needs.. it's because SJ hypnotized and discombobulated millions of people with voodoo.. that's the answer right.. that's the reasonable explainatio? Steve and his voodoo.. you people seriously have to stop smoking crack.. seriously... just say no and step away from the crack pipe..
      doctorSpoc
      • haters

        @doctorSpoc
        depending on marketing as an explanation of apple's success is the last hideaway for the clueless apple haters. they just can't wrap their heads around the idea that millions of people simply like the products and have real world use cases for them.

        apple sold 3.27 million ipads in the very first quarter of its existence, probably 7 million as of this day. the ipad is the most successful electronic hardware product in history, both in units and in revenue.

        and that is all only to the fact that sj called it magical and people are just lemmings that buy whatever apple tells them to buy? what a strange and twisted world these haters live in. logic and sanity will not find a way in this dark abyss. don't try, you're wasting your time.
        banned from zdnet
  • What a stupid blog.

    B!tch!ng about Apple adding a feature others have.<br><br>Weren't you the same idiots b!tch!ng about Apple TV not having the same feature??<br><br>Pathetic. With all that b!tch!ng, I really hope you are not in heat.
    wackoae