Google TV vs. Apple TV

By Clint Boulton  |  Posted 2010-09-04 Print this article Print

Google TV is trying to shift decades of entrenched practice from Cox, Comcast and the like. Apple TV is aiming to be another device users can connect to their TV to augment their viewing experience.

The irony of this proposition is that Jobs himself said in June that world doesn't want another box. Now Apple has another box; it's just one-quarter smaller.

Gartenberg gives the edge to Apple TV in potential to appeal to mainstream consumers.

"It's going to be really hard to go after input No. 1," Gartenberg said. "Going after input No. 1 on your TV is like going after the Russian front in the winter; it just doesn't happen."

"But Apple has a good shot at taking control of that second input, and more importantly to start teaching consumers to change and evolve their TV behavior the same way they did with iPhones. Apple TV is to TV what iPhone was to phones, setting the stage for future products and services.

Of course, as Gartenberg pointed out in a blog post, Apple has no app store yet for Apple TV.  

"While I think an app eco system for TVs can make sense, like the iPhone before it, Apple needs to educate the market on a paradigm shift. This Apple TV is a reset in many ways and the TV a device with very entrenched habits and behaviors. Before consumers can make a shift to that model, Apple needs to establish a position in the living room."

Another irony looms.

While Apple TV's new form factor and price point plus Netflix integration may help the device shed that "hobby" tag its held since it launched in 2006, Google TV may find itself with that same designation.

Early reports are the TV service providers are reticent to support the service, whose ambitions are lofty. It's quite possible Google TV may catch on only with Google fanboys; Apple TV is alive today thanks to the company's fanatical fanboys.

Indeed, it's possible Google TV becomes the next, "old" Apple TV. In any case, Google and Apple's battle for position in consumers' living rooms this holiday season promises to be exciting.  



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