Is This Apple's Top-Secret Android Killer?
So rumor has it that Tim Cook will be announcing the iPanel (i.e., Apple's smart TV product) at next week's Developer's Conference.
In true Apple form, the company could start shipping out these devices by the end of year, or -- just as likely -- there's no television product at all.
We just don't know.
That's why Apple product speculation is such an entertaining pastime (way more so than oil futures speculation).
Actually, my dad thinks Apple doesn't even need to design products anymore. All they have to do is spread the rumor they're expanding into some ridiculous new area (for example, boardwalk snacks), and then Apple fanatics will begin feverishly drawing up the plans for what iFudge should look like, what it should taste like, and if it should have LTE.
Not a bad business model, I'd say.
So, yeah. I can't offer you any new iPanel rumors. The best I can do is tell you what it should be like:
Here's what I want: simpler, easier content delivery.
See, I only really want to watch two things on TV: sports and cartoons. Yet for some reason, I'm paying for 6 home and gardening networks and two Turner stations that just show Mel Gibson's The Patriot on a continuous loop.
So if Apple can figure out a pay-for-content scheme (that includes live sports), that would be a big win in my book.
The other major issue I have with TV is that there's so much content everywhere, I never know what I'm missing.
(Yes I realize this is somewhat contradictory to my first complaint, so don't bother pointing it out in the comments section.)
Anyway, some type of Siri-like artificial intelligence that knows which shows I'd never watch and which shows I might conceivably watch (completely eliminating the former and making relevant recommendations regarding the latter) would be fairly appealing.
Here's what I don't want: social media and app integration.
Yes, I sometimes watch TV while playing with my iPhone. But that doesn't mean I want game center notifications, tweets, and text messages flashing across the TV screen every 2.4 seconds.
Multi-tasking efficiencies notwithstanding, this would not be a positive development for a society that's already chronically ADHD.
Call me old-fashioned, but I still think TV should be immersive, escapist entertainment -- like the movies. How would you like going to the theater to see Schinder's List, and there's an Access Hollywood newsticker at the bottom of the screen?
No thanks. I don't think I'm ready to have my TV become the hub of my connected world. Then where will I go to unwind from my TV time?
But I guess we'll know more in a few days...