According to recent data released by Parks Associates, Apple TV currently is the fourth most popular streaming media device based on 2014 sales, down from third place in 2013. Roku, according to the data, is the most popular streaming media device manufacturer with 34 percent of the market, while Google’s Chromecast accounted for 23 percent of sales.
Roku ▪ August 20
Roku ▪ August 17
Apple plans to hold one of its annual fall media events on Wednesday, September 9th to introduce the new iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus with Force Touch, and after many fits and starts, it appears that the long-awaited next-generation Apple TV will also be unveiled. We’ve been reporting on this upcoming model since 2014, as Apple has been planning to update its set-top-box with support for an App Store for quite some time.
Earlier this year, Apple had locked in a June WWDC debut for both the new Apple TV hardware and software upgrades, but the company ultimately decided to delay the introduction until the fall. While some had speculated that the announcement was pushed back due to a lack of content deals, we are told that the delay was internally attributed to a concern over compromising iOS 9 engineering resources, as the latest OS release is focused at least as much on polish as on new features.
Why would the new Apple TV potentially take away resources from iOS 9? According to sources, this new Apple TV model, codenamed J34, will be the first model to run a full-blown iOS core. Specifically, the new Apple TV operating system will be a TV-optimized version of iOS 9. In addition to the new hardware inside, running iOS 9 will give the new Apple TV a series of benefits over the current model. Below, we explore what users can expect from Apple’s next-generation living room product.
Roku ▪ June 4
Apple TV doubled its share of premium viewing in just three months, from 5% in Q4 2014 to 10% in Q1 2015, according to data from the Adobe Digital Index. Roku’s share increased by only 1% in the same time period, from 7% to 8%. Principal analyst Tamara Gaffney told TNW that Apple’s growth was unprecedented.
Apple TV devices doubling their share of premium video viewing quarter over quarter (QoQ) from 5% to 10%–overtaking Roku […] That’s huge. We never see double in quarter-over-quarter in something that’s been around for a couple of years. We expect Apple TV to take off even more.
Why the spike? Apple dropped the price of the Apple TV to $69 and it grows a few new channels every month but the survey didn’t offer any guesses. Adobe also noted that iOS devices account continue to dominate mobile video viewing, representing 82% of non-subscription viewing … expand full story
Roku ▪ April 7
Just so there’s no ambiguity on this point, I’m definitely an Apple TV fan. The first-generation model was a (literally) hot mess, but Apple did a much better job with the streamlined second- and third-generation versions, which I use every day and have strongly recommended for years. If you have an iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch, the Apple TV is one of the top three accessories you can buy for under $100, and nearly a no-brainer at Apple’s recently announced $69 price point.
Even as a fan, though, I give Apple TV’s chief competitor Roku great credit for developing compelling alternatives. According to reports, Roku is the number one seller of media streamers, and has been outselling the Apple TV for some time now. While it’s true that sales don’t necessarily reflect quality, Roku has earned its numbers by frequently iterating on its products — ironically unlike Apple, which has spent years letting an old Apple TV design chug along as a “hobby.” The difference in Roku’s and Apple’s approaches became starker yesterday when Roku released the new Roku 3 with Voice Search ($100) and new Roku 2 ($70), updates to two of its already-successful devices. These media streamers include several of the key features Apple should be adding to the Apple TV, including voice search, downloadable apps, games, and more…
Roku ▪ January 13
The AllCast media streaming app–which allows photos, music and video to be beamed from a mobile device to an Apple TV, Roku, Xbox, FireTV and a range of smart TVs–has now made it to iOS, following the release of the Android app last month (shown in the above video). It’s compatible with the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, and is optimized for iPhone 5 and up.
Roku ▪ October 1, 2014