As an Apple fan, I just had to get my hands on Apple TV. Most people other than Apple devotees really know much about the service – and it is a service. So let me give my personal props to Apple and why I think the best decision I ever made was to buy Apple TV.
OK, I know that Apple TV is a hardware device, the Apple version of a set top box to bring services and content to your television. But for the most part, the point of having the box for me is the wide variety of Internet services I can access with it that includes 3 of the 4 major sports networks (the NFL will eventually learn) and best of all – it’s made by Apple. Main competitors such as Google TV and Roku always try to attract customers by getting by on the cheap. And because it’s by Apple, I can take the content from iTunes, whether on a Windows based computer or OS X and play it on the HDTV in my lounge room. Competitors complain about the exclusivity of the Apple iTunes download format, but you pay for quality.
Now I’ll admit when I first opened the package from UPS, I wasn’t very thrilled. But remember what I said at the beginning – Apple TV is more of a service than a piece of hardware. That idea echoes through the entire Apple line of products. There are many smartphones but only the iPhone that is seen as the industry standard and the one that all other phones are compared to. The same holds true of the iPads in the tablet space. It is not about what the device looks like, or the technical specs, though those are important. But the bottom line is how the device performs, what it can (and can’t) access, and how reliable is the support when something goes wrong. I can’t speak for the competition but I think Apple would probably have to spend a lot less on customer service because its devices are easy to use and reliable – they just make sense.
I have more than an average amount of free time on my hands, so when I spend that time entertaining myself alone or with my friends online, the Apple TV box is my best friend. Here is where I don’t think I’m that different from anyone else. Knowing that it is there and will work when I need it to be is critical. No red circles or blue screens of death to worry about. It consistently works.
Can you say streaming video? All of the video content at the iTunes store can be streamed using Apple TV. And as the iTunes store continues to acquire more and more content, the value of my Apple TV increases. Because it’s compatible with all my other Apple computers and devices, it essentially functions as a centerpiece of my entertainment room. The copying, synching, and other contortions owners of different hardware brands have to go through to play music or games, or watch videos disappears. It is like a $99 thank you note from Apple for being faithful to them.
If one characteristic can be found among all Apple products, it would be simplicity of operation. That is particularly true of iPhones and iPads. The addition of Apple TV to my collection of Apple purchases brings it all together in a central point.