Apple’s finger-in-every-pie business model has successfully pushed Mp3 players, smart phones and tablets onto the masses. Conquering the all-important television market, however, was Steve Jobs’ white whale.
The company’s Apple TV media player has shipped four million units this year, revealed research group Strategy Analytics. Combined with a fanbase eager to buy content, Apple is in good shape moving into the new Smart TV era, said Jia Wu, senior analyst.
According to Wu and co.’s “Connected TV Players: Another Battlefield in the Smart TV War” report, 2011 streaming video player sales have doubled last year’s numbers. Out of the estimated 12 million devices now on the market, Apple holds a 32 percent share. Around eight percent of U.S. homes boast an Apple TV, Roku or NeoTV box, he added.
Apple TV owners are also less shy about spending when compared to Roku customers. Wu found that 30 percent of them rented videos – 10 percent more than those who use other set-top boxes.
“Apple is leading this nascent market, which it still considers a ‘hobby,'” said Wu. “As Apple prepares for its expected launch of smart TVs in 2012, rival platforms must accelerate their development plans to keep Apple from running away with the connected TV business, as it has done in smartphones and digital music.” (via Home Media Magazine)
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