Content on TV is good, but delivery is lacking. Channel surfing is a waste of time in a generation of on demand, and Apple TV may be positioned to be the next big thing.

Social Dynamics

Broadcast TV has traditionally owned the living room TV. It has been encroached upon by DVRs, streaming TV, and interactive TV is inevitably coming next.

People like to see themselves on TV. Apps and the Internet have allowed people to broadcast themselves, but being on TV is different for some reason.

YouTube and Periscope are a couple of the sites/apps that have created a new kind of celebrity online. However, an experience viewed on a TV in the living room, with the whole family watching, is very different from an experience on a small personal device. Likely we will see a new breed of innovators born on the platform who connect with viewers in a unique way.

Apps Create New Experiences

We have apps on iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and they are all a little different and tailored to fit each platform. It is still early for the tvOS platform and what app experiences will ultimately be on like on Apple TV we will just have to wait and see.

When the iPhone first hit the market, it was a pretty cool device with some great functionality. However, when Apple opened the App Store to developers, it became a platform business. What is significant about a platform business is that it provides the opportunity for others (app makers), aside from the owner of the platform (Apple), to make money.

One of the exciting app types to see coming is interactive television. It is inevitable that we will see interactive TV. Right now you cannot go out and tell developers to build interactive TV apps because nobody knows exactly what that is yet.

Mammoth Mountain featured on TrailTap for Apple TV
Mammoth Mountain featured on TrailTap for Apple TV

However, Apple has built an ecosystem of developers and entrepreneurial minds around its iOS platform. Many of whom will begin developing for the tvOS platform, and through trial and error, will figure out how to engage with audiences and ultimately profit from it.

Revenue

People who have figured out new ways to monetize content through mobile will also be coming into the TV space. The traditional ad model on TV is struggling and trying to adapt. Apple TV may be a big wave of disruption in how people make money on TV.

The First tvOS App For Ski Resorts

Here at Treeline, we built an Apple TV app for our TrailTap brand. On Apple TV, TrailTap users can flip through over 470 ski resorts in the US. Each resort has its own page that includes current conditions (provided by snocountry.com), resort info, and tons of photos. People who have tried the new app say the experience is like taking a virtual trip to hundreds of resorts. You can find the app in the tvOS App Store by searching for “TrailTap.”

TrailTap for tvOS

The TrailTap App has been a fun project for us and is appealing as a directory/showcase app for many resorts. We also think Apple TV gets interesting when you think of an individual business having its own interactive TV channel. Ski resorts, for example, already have content like videos and snow reports that they are delivering online and in mobile apps.

Their mobile apps are connecting real-time social media interactions between people on the slopes, people checking out the conditions from home, and the resort itself. What resorts do with the interactive elements of tvOS could be fascinating.

What are your thoughts on Apple TV? Please discuss in the comments below.

  • gdsinclair

    Thought-provoking topic. As soon as the 4th generation was released, I bought my first Apple TV. Suggest developing an app to go with TrailTap focused on surf-centric resorts. A couple examples are Nihiwatu and Kandui. Lots of content out there that continually gets added.

    • TreelineInteractive

      Thanks! That would be a cool Apple TV App. I’ll be the first to volunteer to scout surf locations.