If you’re in the market for a new HDTV or ready to revamp your home entertainment center altogether, take notice, Apple is rumored to be joining the marketplace. Before you purchase new components and start comparing the features of all of those new smart TVs now available, take a moment to evaluate your needs. Consider what you have already, what you use, what you want, and what you need. Do you, or will you stream content? Do you already video chat online? Do you have a large amount of digital-media?
Reportedly, Apple is developing a new HD cable TV set that will combine many of the features that existing Apple lovers have come to expect via desktop, laptop, portable media players, tablet and phones. Like most Apple products, you can expect the price to be significantly higher than the competitor. Is the Apple TV really worth it?
The actual specs for the Apple iTV are unknown – primarily because Apple itself has failed to acknowledge rumors about a smart TV. The resolution should be leaps and bounds above the competition, if you look at the current iMac Cinema Displays. Speculation and logical reasoning say that television will have many of the features the current Apple TV (accessory), iPad tablets and iPhones have – like streaming media.
Don’t, however, expect Apple to incorporate a touch screen to the display itself – it would be completely impractical for users to walk up to the television to interact with it, and fingerprint smudges would be huge bummer. More than likely, the “oohs” and “aahs” will come from a touch-screen remote that duplicates screen selections in full color LED display.
Because the iTV will bear the Apple name – expect it to be revolutionary. Apple’s business strategy, as always, has been to enter a market and transform it. Expect it to incorporate a full digital library, Wi-Fi compatibility and a built-in camera for face-time video chat. What better way to Skype with grandma than by relaxing on the couch, rather than hovering over a small computer screen?
Perhaps the most impressive feature the iTV is expected to boast will be Siri – the voice guide currently loved by iPhone 4s owners. If the TV is equipped with Siri, as Cult of Mac claims, you can expect to turn the television on and off, surf the web, browse channels and even adjust the display all with the sound of your voice.
So is it worth it? For unbiased television shoppers who haven’t pledged their allegiance to Apple, it’s yet to be seen whether shoppers will be willing to pay twice as much for a name and features than it would for a traditional HD TV. After all, for decades now, Americans have used their TVs to, well, watch TV – no surfing the Internet. Apple, however, has a famed history of revolutionizing the market, and controlling a solid segment of the marketplace.
Ultimately, if you are an avid and committed follower of all things Mac, then of course the new Apple TV will be a tempting choice- if for no other reason than ease of use and integration with your existing products. If, however, you just want home entertainment at bargain basement prices – your money may end up being better spent on a more traditional TV set and components. The truth is, until Apple makes its intentions clearer – little comparison can be done to determine which TV is right for you. But if The Motley Fool is correct in its predictions, you could be making your decision as soon as this holiday season.
This guest post was written by Pedro Cavallaro. Pedro studied finance and accounting in college. He now spreads his knowledge by freelancing and editing.