Thursday, January 27, 2011

Jobs on Smart TVs

Last summer, Apple's chief executive Steve Jobs responded to a question about the future of smart TV by saying it was a difficult problem to solve because cable companies "give everybody a step top box for free, or for $10 per month. That pretty much squashes any opportunity for innovation, because nobody's willing to buy a set top box."

At the time Jobs quipped, "Ask Tivo, ask Replay TV, ask Roku, ask Vudu, ask us, ask Google in a few months," challenging the wild exuberance then supporting Google's newly released plans to take over the living room with Android-based Google TV devices.

Jobs has long referred to Apple TV as a "hobby," and stated that the market for smart TVs is "not a problem with technology, not a problem with vision, it's a fundamental go to market problem."

Cable operators offer a "balkanized" global network of different standards and different government approvals needed to act in the role of a broadcaster. "I'm sure smarter people than us will figure this out, but that's why we say Apple TV a hobby; that's why we use that phrase," Jobs said.

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