Apple TV sales up 300% over year-ago quarter

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Purportedly left for dead and mocked by pundits, Apple TV has actually turned into a productive hobby for Apple that will see continued development in the future, with sales rising threefold over the past year, according to acting chief executive Tim Cook.



Speaking in the company's financial results conference call, Cook said, "there was a tremendous tickup year over year [for Apple TV]. In fact unit sales were up over 3 times vs the year-ago quarter. Â*However let me be clear, we still consider this a hobby."



Cook explained, "It Is clear the movie rental business is working and there are more customers who want to try it. Â*We will continue to invest there, because we believe there is something there for us in the future."



When asked about the "digital living room opportunity and how it relates to Apple TV" during the last quarterly conference call in October, Steve Jobs replied, "well again I think the whole category is still a hobby right now. I don't think anybody has succeeded at it. And actually the experimentation has slowed down. A lot of the early companies that were trying things have faded away."



"So I have to say that given the economic conditions, given the venture capital outlook and stuff, I continue to believe that it will be a hobby in 2009."



Apple released its Take Two software update for Apple TV a year ago, and has since released additional three free updates for users.



Additional coverage of Apple's Q109 release



Apple profits edge higher on sales of 2.52m Macs, 22.7m iPods

Notes of interest for Apple's Q1 2009 financial results call

Apple rules out "iPhone nano," not keen on Mac netbook
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 78
    postulantpostulant Posts: 1,272member
    I love the convenience of my AppleTV:



    Call my gf over

    Order up a pizza

    Hop in the shower

    Cuddle up

    Rent
  • Reply 2 of 78
    eaieai Posts: 417member
    Frankly, it'll continue to be a hobby till they improve the software and take on board what their customers (and more importantly, potential customers) want. For example, I want to be able to watch things I download from the internet (not via iTunes). I also want to be able to watch the BBC iPlayer (a UK specific hulu-like service from the BBC). Neither of those two things are possible with Apple TV, but both are possible with a number of competitors (e.g. Boxee). So, I'll probably buy a Mac Mini instead, and do it that way (if they ever update it)...



    They're really missing so many opportunities here.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Postulant View Post


    I love the convenience of my AppleTV:



    Call my gf over

    Order up a pizza

    Hop in the shower

    Cuddle up

    Rent



    At what point does your gf join you in this?
  • Reply 3 of 78
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eAi View Post


    Frankly, it'll continue to be a hobby till they improve the software and take on board what their customers (and more importantly, potential customers) want. For example, I want to be able to watch things I download from the internet (not via iTunes). I also want to be able to watch the BBC iPlayer (a UK specific hulu-like service from the BBC). Neither of those two things are possible with Apple TV, but both are possible with a number of competitors (e.g. Boxee). So, I'll probably buy a Mac Mini instead, and do it that way (if they ever update it)...



    They're really missing so many opportunities here.



    Super easy to hack your ATV and get Boxee and XMBC installed and do what you want. Take a look at ATV Flash. It doesn't break anything on your ATV.
  • Reply 4 of 78
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Purportedly left for dead and mocked by pundits, Apple TV has actually turned into a productive hobby for Apple, with sales up 300% over the year ago quarter according to company COO Tim Cook.



    Speaking in the company's financial results conference call, Cook said, "there was a tremendous tickup year over year [for Apple TV]. In fact unit sales were up over 3 times vs the year-ago quarter. *However let me be clear, we still consider this a hobby.



    Could you maybe fix the faulty math in this article? If sales were over 3 times that means sales increased by something over 200% not 300%, otherwise sales would have been 4 times higher.



    Also, I'm guessing there weren't any real numbers mentioned. I mean if they only sold 100 last year, tripling that isn't really anything to be proud of. I'm guessing they were higher, but without any solid numbers (and it still being referred to as a hobby) I'm also going to guess sales were still pretty piss poor.
  • Reply 5 of 78
    postulantpostulant Posts: 1,272member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eAi View Post






    At what point does your gf join you in this?



    When the chick flick starts to play.
  • Reply 6 of 78
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,425member
    I expect that if Apple can hit a $149 pricepoint with the Apple TV they will see sales improve by %1000.



    At each price band ($99/149/199 etc) sales will stratify with the majority of sales likely

    coming from the entry level.



    The Apple TV needs to stop masquarading around as a computer imitating a CE device.

    Apple should slap an ARM proc, better video decode and open it up to Hulu and Netflix amongst others.



    I know this sounds crazy. Why would you let your competitors hitch a ride? Because once you get people comfortable with the idea of streaming content it means they become hungry and iTunes would still be the premiere service.



    iTunes didn't popularize music downloads it popularized "legal" music downloads. It proved that people would pay for downloaded tracks if the ease of use and quality exceeded expectation.



    Video files are no different. Netflix, Hulu and other services are ok but Apple needs to make iTunes content shine above all else and they have nothing to fear about competition.
  • Reply 7 of 78
    eaieai Posts: 417member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by webfrasse View Post


    Super easy to hack your ATV and get Boxee and XMBC installed and do what you want. Take a look at ATV Flash. It doesn't break anything on your ATV.



    I've heard it doesn't work terribly well with some video (too slow?)... I'm also not sure I want to invest in such a 'closed' system... I'll investigate some more. Either way, I might wait for the Mac Mini update and see what happens. If we've not seen one by the end of March, I might just get whatever available now...
  • Reply 8 of 78
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    What? Did they sell 10 last year and 30 this year?

    What a piece of crap.
  • Reply 9 of 78
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by caliminius View Post


    Could you maybe fix the faulty math in this article? If sales were over 3 times that means sales increased by something over 200% not 300%, otherwise sales would have been 4 times higher.



    Also, I'm guessing there weren't any real numbers mentioned. I mean if they only sold 100 last year, tripling that isn't really anything to be proud of. I'm guessing they were higher, but without any solid numbers (and it still being referred to as a hobby) I'm also going to guess sales were still pretty piss poor.



    You got it. If that's not bogus statistics- what is?
  • Reply 10 of 78
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Postulant View Post


    I love the convenience of my AppleTV:



    Call my gf over

    Order up a pizza

    Hop in the shower

    Cuddle up

    Rent



    You forgot to mention that it keeps the pizza hot while you shower.
  • Reply 11 of 78
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Postulant View Post


    I love the convenience of my AppleTV:



    Call my gf over

    Order up a pizza

    Hop in the shower

    Cuddle up

    Rent



    Rent what your GF?
  • Reply 12 of 78
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eAi View Post


    Frankly, it'll continue to be a hobby till they improve the software and take on board what their customers (and more importantly, potential customers) want. For example, I want to be able to watch things I download from the internet (not via iTunes). I also want to be able to watch the BBC iPlayer (a UK specific hulu-like service from the BBC). Neither of those two things are possible with Apple TV, but both are possible with a number of competitors (e.g. Boxee). So, I'll probably buy a Mac Mini instead, and do it that way (if they ever update it)...



    This is pretty much my position. I really have to wonder why Mini is so limited with respect to what it can do media wise. Now Apple doesn't need to make it into a desktop computer but even a lowly ARm based system could offer up a more diverse selection of features than Apple TV.



    Frankly I'd also redo it in the mold of an iPod Touch. That is a semi closed platform that is easily extended by downloadable software and is a good gaming device. Frankly Touch does more useful things than Apple TV right now.

    Quote:

    They're really missing so many opportunities here.



    Totally agree here. Apple could be doing so much more here with this device and still keep in separate from the computer line up. They really need to adopt some of the iPod teams mentality.

    Quote:







    At what point does your gf join you in this?



    Hopefully she pays for the pizza wearing just a smile! Works for me.



    Dave
  • Reply 13 of 78
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fast Fred 1 View Post


    Rent what your GF?



    Renting a GF is not a new idea -- it's the world's oldest



    I like my AppleTV just fine. It's nice, but it could be awesome! If they could make it work with a wireless keyboard/mouse, it could be what WebTV should have been. WebTV is the coolest idea that has had the most disappointing execution -- no wonder Microsoft bought it.
  • Reply 14 of 78
    postulantpostulant Posts: 1,272member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by macFanDave View Post


    Renting a GF is not a new idea -- it's the world's oldest



    I like my AppleTV just fine. It's nice, but it could be awesome! If they could make it work with a wireless keyboard/mouse.





    http://www.appletvhacks.net/2007/03/...ard-and-mouse/
  • Reply 15 of 78
    My guess is it morphs into a full out gaming platform, as well as continuing down its current path.
  • Reply 16 of 78
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 2,677member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by caliminius View Post


    Also, I'm guessing there weren't any real numbers mentioned. I mean if they only sold 100 last year, tripling that isn't really anything to be proud of. I'm guessing they were higher, but without any solid numbers (and it still being referred to as a hobby) I'm also going to guess sales were still pretty piss poor.



    Piss poor compared to what? R&D for the product? A cheap little box with a slimmed down version of OS X that accesses the iTunes servers. Sounds to me like any money they make from the product and rentals is pretty much all profit. This is a product that basically helps maximize the use of their other more important assets with minimal development costs to them, which is probably why they still refer to it as a hobby of sorts.



    And I mean really, you come up with a number like 100!? IF they sold 10 or 10,000, tripling those numbers wouldn't make the product worth the time. I believe the G4 Cube sold around 80,000 units in its first year and was scrapped, so the AppleTV must be doing much better than it did. And Apple surely knows when to throw in the towel, as they showed when they decided that iPod speaker thing wasn't worth the time.
  • Reply 17 of 78
    While I am personally thrilled to hear that Apple will continue investment in ATV, there is the obvious question of segmentation and road map. As a Boxee user, the data is hardly clear whether best served getting a Mini and Boxee enabling it or getting ATV and Boxee enabling it. One clear fork is for the Netflix crowd, where ATV does not have the horsepower to run Netflix, whereas Mini does.



    Btw, if interested, here is a post I wrote that analyzes the Apple-centered media center universe:



    What it Means to be a Social Media Center: Boxee, Apple TV and Square Connect

    http://thenetworkgarden.com/weblog/2...-connect-.html



    Check it out if interested.



    Mark
  • Reply 18 of 78
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,167member
    I don't know why some people are obsessed in considering AppleTV a failure! It is the best product in its class. The problem is not AppleTV, the problem is with ISP limitations in regard to bandwidth, speeds, and availability. Until this problem is solved we will never see AppleTV or any other similar product takes off no matter how good or cheap it is.
  • Reply 19 of 78
    wobegonwobegon Posts: 764member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eAi View Post


    Frankly, it'll continue to be a hobby till they improve the software and take on board what their customers (and more importantly, potential customers) want. For example, I want to be able to watch things I download from the internet (not via iTunes).



    What exactly do you mean? Are you saying 1) you want to download things off the internet through the Apple TV itself (but not iTunes Store stuff), or are you saying 2) you want to watch non-iTunes Store videos you've downloaded on your computer via the internet and play that through the Apple TV?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eAi View Post


    I also want to be able to watch the BBC iPlayer (a UK specific hulu-like service from the BBC).



    What other digital set-top-boxes allow this? Who says BBC or here in the U.S., Hulu, would allow Apple to stream their content? It'd be one thing if Apple introduced an Apple TV-optimized version of Safari, but I strongly doubt even if they did introduce such a thing (which seems possible) that they'd include Flash support.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eAi View Post


    Neither of those two things are possible with Apple TV, but both are possible with a number of competitors (e.g. Boxee). So, I'll probably buy a Mac Mini instead, and do it that way (if they ever update it)...



    They're really missing so many opportunities here.



    Boxee is hardly a competitor to Apple TV, it's an Apple TV hack.
  • Reply 20 of 78
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 15,350moderator
    Simple steps for the future: Use Nvidia Ion + Atom (cooler, more energy efficient), drop the price by 50%, offer more content, offer a subscription model. Then it becomes competitive.



    It may have gone up 300% but 300% of something very small is still a failure (sorry 'hobby').



    For what the box does, it's severely overpriced.



    For £9 per month, you get unlimited DVD rentals from the online rental stores. Going by postage times, you can get about 10 DVDs. This means that in 1 year, you get 120 films for £108.



    The ATV box is £195 and each rental is £2.49 so those same 120 films cost you:



    £493



    I cancelled my DVD subscription partly because I couldn't be bothered doing the whole postal thing but ATV without a subscription isn't winning me over with those prices.



    It doesn't even have to be unlimited. Just do a 10 films + 30 TV episodes per month deal for £10. Some people won't watch all that so the cost is spread out. They could also set it up so you can watch maybe 10 minutes of a TV show without it counting as a watch and 30 minutes of a film.



    This way you can preview content to see if you like it. It would obviously track it so you couldn't just go in again and watch stuff in parts. This is the only model that would interest me about the ATV. I still wouldn't pay £195 for the box though. I'd maybe stretch to over £100 but £99 is a price point that looks good.



    £99 for 40GB Nvidia Ion, Atom box + £10 per month and they could have a minimum of a 6 or 12 month contract.
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