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Apple TV Take 2 – Not So Much – Choice

I’ve been chewing on the whole Apple TV take 2 thing for a few days now. Despite my Fanboy status, still completely and totally underwhelmed. Here’s why:

  • Netflix on demand but nobody else (Amazon, Vudu, etc.). I can get more choices cheaper with Roku (and won’t always pay $4.99 a stream). Heck there are $99 Blu-ray players with more functionality and you at least get a Blu-ray player (and $1.49 viewings from your local Redbox).
  • Speaking of cheaper with Roku, I can also get a lot more with that little box as well. Have you seen their continuing channel list? Throw in the possibilities Media Fly allows for and the Apple TV is 1/10th the box.
  • Of course I can’t get Hulu or anything like that with Roku but with the coming Boxee box (yes, twice as much) and the recent Plex Announcements (wow, didn’t see what coming), I will continue to watch Hulu on my big screen – despite what the EULAs say.
  • Missed opportunity. Apple TV should have her own app store – it’s as simple as that. Now, for those telling me “it’s coming” I simply ask – and where will those apps be stored – the cloud? Nope. Not in this release of the box.
  • The whole “amateur hour” dig really got to me. Instead of “people want to watch television and Hollywood Movies” (heaven forbid an Indie, Steve) how about “People want to watch what they want to watch and we’re gonna make it easy.

I know Ed Dale and others tell me this is just step 1 but I’m not seeing it. For a company who wants to “think different” it just smacks of a company rushing to get something on the shelves in time for Christmas.

Your take – fanboy or otherwise?

Roku, Mediafly, and Easy Media Direct

This weekend I presented my vision at Stompernet Live 8.

I’ll get a clip or two up soon – but the vision is this: one source, for all media, on all platforms.

Paul, isn’t this what Podcasting is all about? Yes, it is, but Podcasting has yet to produce a few elements vital to such a vision.

Streaming: Yes, still think it is bad form but there are instances when we do need it. It’s part of both elements below.

A Television Set Top Box: I wrote about this issue a few posts back but it is plain and simple – no box yet (but one) even shows a remote chance of becoming the standard.

Reasonable DRM: By this I mean the leveraging of tech to enable new models of distribution not possible without the tech (while being completely transparent to the end user). For example – live streams and pay per view models.

So, by leveraging the strength of managed RSS (through companies such as Premiumcast), device independent distribution clients (such as Mediafly), and a reasonable set top box play (such as Roku), we have the chance to make this vision a reality.

And, finally, despite the cool geek factors at play here, we finally have a possibility for frictionless media delivery on a scale that can make this space profitable while giving our audience an infrastructure they deserve.

I’m pretty excited about it.

Would love your initial thoughts.