Originally Posted by SockRolid
And just exactly why would any Blu-Ray player have streaming as well as optical disc playback? Because the manufacturers know that Blu-Ray is just an interim step toward that "streaming-only age." They're hedging their bets. Future-proofing a product that consumers resisted by adding forward-looking technology to it. Think of Apple TV as not being burdened with the backward compatibility problem of supporting DVDs and Blu-Ray discs.
"The market" consists of average TV viewers. And a large portion of them never learned to set the time on their VCRs. The very mention of "outputting files" makes them cringe. Simple is better in the home entertainment market. Apple has moved Apple TV past the bleeding-edge early-adopter fringe to the mainstream. (And as we'll see very soon, Google TV will suffer in part because Google didn't move beyond that techno-fringe market, but that's a whole different "bag of hurt" than Blu-Ray.)
What you're saying is that Apple TV isn't conventional enough to appeal to the mass market. I disagree. I think simpler is better, and Apple TV certainly is simple. When Apple brings the simplicity of iOS apps, especially games, to Apple TV, it will really take off.
After all, that's one reason why Apple went to the trouble of replacing the old Apple TV's Mac-based hardware and software complexity with iOS device simplicity, no? So it can run iOS apps. That's Apple TV's true killer feature, and it's sold well despite not having it yet.
1st paragraph: Obviously. You act as if this is a bad thing? As if they know they're screwed? Hardly. Blu-Ray is still the highest quality media format out there today and it will be the strongest for a good 5 more years at least. Maybe even longer if the countless interests can't find a common interest to sort out the ever-problematic licensing war. People still own too many DVD's. And at the same time, people love Netflix. A box that does all is going to smoke a box that does one thing ahead of it's time until, well, it's time actually arrives. It's still too early.
And burden? Please. As a consumer, I love avoiding the burden of having to use separate boxes for streaming and optical discs. I now have one player that does it all sans cable TV.
And hell, the one nice idea behind Google TV was that Sony Blu-Ray that would've even solved that issue. Too bad Google can't create a market-ready product to save their lives.
2nd paragraph: The market most interested in streaming technology in a box like Apple TV is video/technophiles. They get it, know how it all works and they're anxious to use this technology. Unfortunately, they don't take Apple TV seriously because it compromises the user experience by being limited to 720P and non-HD sound. They want it all, and sadly, it would've been easy for Apple to make this happen. If you can't get the hardcores excited about a product, you're not likely to have a hit on your hands. In the HEC market, you need to get the techies first and the consumers will follow.
Google TV is failing because the interface sucks, the content providers are blocking everything and it requires updates immediately that take forever to download. People are returning them before they even use them. It has nothing to do with focusing on the techno-fringe. That's Apple fanboy malarky. What the hell do you think an Apple fanboy is for that matter??? It all boils down to the fact that it's just a very poorly executed product; wholly unrefined. Oh yeah, and they're idiots for not working more with content providers long before launch. "See very soon?" No, it's already happening. Can't say it enough: Google is a joke of a company.
3rd paragraph: Until Apple actually unleashes the ability to use apps on the Apple TV, it's a moot point discussing it as a killer feature. Consumers know Apple TV exists. They're not oblivious. 99% of them would rather have a Blu-Ray player though right now. That's not going to change real soon, and even apps might not change that if it came down to one or the other. The streaming-only age is absolutely coming, and I personally can't wait, but it's absolutely not even close to arriving yet.
What you need to consider is that simple is better, and in saying that, are you aware of how many consumers have no idea what wi-fi actually is let alone whether or not they have it? But does every consumer and their mother and their grandmother know how to put a disc in a tray and press play? Yep. No iTunes accounts, Netflix accounts, etc...disc. Tray. Play. That's why Blu-Ray players are such a great transition product. They cover every base, and that "burden" you refer to is going to be the thing that allows streaming to eventually become mainstream. Apple TV's eventual success will piggyback off of On-Demand cable boxes and Blu-Ray players with streaming capabilities. That's where the market on whole is learning what streaming is all about.