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5 Reasons Why Apple TV is the Next Mobile

Updated on April 28, 2016

Steve Jobs wanted to design a smart TV set that would be synchronized with iCloud and every Apple gadget owned by a user. The 1st Gen Apple TV hit the market almost 9 years ago. However, it’s the latest Apple TV set that created a massive stir among the online community. Guess why?

For the first time in history, there’s an independent tvOS app store where users can download third-party TV applications and run them on a big screen.

Upon its release the 4rth generation TV received generally mixed reviews. Some writers (including Nick Pino of TechRadar and Forbes’ John Archer) felt the gadget was pretty smart but underdeveloped. Other websites (Slash Gear and PC Mag in particular) praised the new Siri-enabled remote. However, none of the reviewers shared Tim Cook’s belief that the future of TV was apps.

Well, you can’t really blame them, can you?

Although Americans do watch less TV (the number of “broadband only” households increased by 1.7 million between 2013 and 2014), 83% of American families still pay for cable TV.

That’s why most companies still don’t have a tvOS app or build one simply for the sake of “being there” (increasing brand visibility).

The disappointment is particularly strong among third-party developers who make decent money on mobile applications. Back in December a popular Apple TV game was reportedly earning about $ 100 a day. Compare it to the daily revenues of Minecraft: Pocket Addition (currently # 1 paid app on iTunes, makes $ 55 thousand a day). Meh.

Actually, there are five reasons why businesses shouldn’t give up on Apple TV app development so soon.

Why your business needs an Apple TV app?

  • Mobile App Store was not an instant success. The App Store was launched in 2008 and saw 10 million downloads worldwide in its opening weekend. This impressive achievement, however, seems less significant if you go into detail. In the beginning, iPhone users had only 552 apps to choose from (there were 1025 apps on the tvOS store in 2 days after its launch). The mobile app store was made available in 62 countries (simultaneously). The 4rth Gen Apple TV is currently sold in 80 countries, but the voice recognition option (a feature that makes Apple TV stand out among its competitors) is supported in just 8 countries. Between 2009 and 2015, the combined smartphone sales reached 5.4 billion units. In 2016, Apple is expected to ship 24 million TVs worldwide (a lot more than Roku and other popular media players, but not enough to compete with iPhones). Mobile and TV apps belong to different categories. You can’t expect the same revenues – at least, not yet;
  • Apple TV is pure IoT. In less than 8 months there will be 6.4 billion connected devices in use (up 30% from 2015). By 2025, the number of IoT gadgets might reach 75 billion. A smart TV set perfectly fits in the world where electric bubs talk to thermostats. And if you think the Internet of Things is not going to happen anytime soon, we’ll prove you wrong. You can finally battle security and interoperability issues (common for most IoT devices) with the use of Artificial Intelligence! Apple is no stranger to AI. In fact, Siri remains the best (and most sophisticated) voice recognition system available on the market. The company also acquired Vocal IQ – a UK-based tech startup that developed a self-learning API to enhance communication between users and their smart gadgets. Apple is still one step ahead of the competition;
  • tvOS App Store will be huge. In the fourth quarter of 2015, there were only 2500 applications on the tvOS app store. By the end of 2016, the number will grow by 400%. As of now, the store is largely dominated by broadcasting corporations and successful companies like Airbnb. These guys can easily splurge on another app to stake out a claim to the new media platform; what about third-party vendors? Software development companies like Rovio Entertainment (the Angry Birds franchise), Snowman (Alto’s Adventure) and Frogmind (Badland) have already proven that an Apple TV game (and the gadget is considered “immature” for gaming!) can be a chart success. Alto’s Adventure, for example, became one of the first games available on Apple TV. It’s been six months since the gadget’s release, but Alto is still the 4th top paid application on the store;
  • Apple’s Midas touch. Just in case you haven’t noticed, the Apple team possess an outstanding ability to turn everything they touch into gold. The company’s value is estimated at $ 728 billion (or even $ 1.25 trillion – according to Carl Icahn). Forbes actually thinks it’s twice as valuable as Microsoft. In the first quarter of 2016, Apple’s revenue reached $ 75.9 billion. The corporation outpaced all of its rivals, including IBM, Samsung and Google. The App Store makes 75% more revenue than Google Play. It won’t be long until Apple TV becomes the next iPhone. Back in 2014, its share on the streaming media device market reached 40.6% and has been growing ever since;
  • The future of TV is really apps. Behind all the hype created by digital media, the true meaning of Apple TV technology somehow got lost. The new gadget brings the communication between viewers and content creators to the next level. Customers do not want ads; instead, they prefer to interact with a brand. And that’s the reason why 78% of enterprises have social media teams. Well, there’s some kind of an “application” on every digital media player. Why Apple? The tvOS and iOS frameworks are nearly identical, so Apple devices can be integrated with each other. And yes, the company knows a few things about interaction. Have you seen the Carrot weather app?

As of now, the gadget – as well as the whole tvOS ecosystem – is not flawless. The Siri remote is only suitable for playing simple swiping games like Crossy Roads. The manual text entry is pretty tiresome. And you cannot actually rent lodgings via your Airbnb application. But Apple TV keeps getting better. If you don’t hire a reliable custom software development company to build a TV application today, tomorrow the TV store may be stuffed with apps.

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