Feeds

Crap turnover, sucky margins: TV is a 'terrible business' – Steve Jobs

Ex-WSJ journo quotes tech titan as Apple streaming telly box bags $1bn in 2013

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Fanbois hoping to upgrade their Apple streaming set-top box to a fully fledged Apple TV set will have been disheartened by revelations in a new book claiming Steve Jobs did not support building an iTelly.

According to former WSJ journo Yukari Iwatani Kane's book Haunted Empire: Apple After Steve Jobs, the fruity führer reportedly told a meeting of Apple's top 100 execs that there was no chance Cupertino would make its own gogglebox.

"TV is a terrible business," Jobs was quoted as saying in her new book. "They don't turn over and the margins suck."

However, previous reports might give fanbois some hope of seeing some kind of Apple television.

Apple made more than $1bn from its Apple TV set-top box last year, with Tim Cook saying it had turned from what Jobs had once described as a "hobby" into a valid area of business.

At the All Things Digital conference in 2010, the Apple godhead said selling set top boxes was difficult because cable networks give them away for free, which is why the content-free boxen remained a "hobby" for Apple.

Jobs said this practice "squashes any opportunity for innovation". He also had a particular problem with the aesthetics of televisions and set top boxes, which often end up requiring several different remote controls and turned a corner of the owner's living room into a rats' nest of cables.

"The only way that's ever going to change is if you can really go back to square one, tear up the set top box, redesign it from scratch with a consistent UI across all these different functions, and get it to consumers in a way that they're willing to pay for it," he said. "And right now there's no way to do that."

The obvious answer to Jobs' misgivings would be to grab hold of some content, which is likely why Cupertino has previously tried to ink content deals with major entertainment firms including CBS and is often reported to be in talks with other firms.

Apple may have done well from heeding the tech titan's warnings that people simply didn't refresh tellies the way they do hardware. Today's TV-pushers are having trouble getting the 4K-ing boxes out the door, no matter how many curves and ultra-high-def features they add. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.