Apple TV, evolved
From a product development perspective, it’s been incredibly fun to watch the slow, but steady, evolution of the Apple TV. Reworking the UI, adding bluetooth keyboard support, content additions, and AirPlay among other enhancements. Although still considered a “hobby” according to Tim Cook, I have found his language in support of the product has been getting stronger in recent quarters (I listen to every earnings call). I think Apple knows there is something there, thanks to the millions of units flying off the shelves, but I’m betting the content access continues to be the uncontrolled dependency that blocks the Apple TV from becoming a more central product. While we wait for the next iteration, hoping for something big, I hear nothing but love from the people who choose to drop $120 on this little black box. Probably the most value for dollar you can extract from the California-designed lineup.
Who knows, we might soon get the chance to start writing apps for Apple TV. iOS 7 seems to be laying the foundation for a great gaming experience that goes beyond flicking birds across the screen. With the iOS 7 release of Sprite Kit (making game development simple), Game Controller support (moving beyond touch interaction), and the hard push Apple is making on Auto-Layout (making it simple for developing for variable screen size) it seems to me that something big is coming.