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Is your TV the next big platform for Apps?


Is your TV the next target platform for (Business) Apps?

In recent years the market for small ‘portable’ devices which can make your TV smarter (for those who don’t already own a smart TV) has grown. Apple, Google, Amazon and many other companies entered the market for small affordable devices which simply require a HDMI connection and some power. An example of a few popular devices:

  • Apple TV (with tvOS installed since the Apple TV 4)
  • Android TV (Nexus Player / Chromecast)
  • Amazon Fire (Fire TV Stick  / Fire TV / Fire TV Gaming Edition).

When you take a look at all the devices that are out there, many of them just allow the users to stream content to their TV or watch online content provided by Netflix for example. Last year Apple released a new update to their Apple TV3, the new Apple TV4. Earlier versions of the Apple TV came with some preinstalled apps and no possibility to add new apps. Companies such as Google(source) and Amazon (source) released devices in 2014 which came with such an App store to install additional apps and even ‘simple’ games. The new version of Apple TV gave users what they have wanted for years; a new OS which ‘finally’ opened the doors for developers.

Apple recently started shipping the new version of the Apple TV and the new app store is getting filled with more and more apps. When you browse through the apps and look at what kind of apps are available for the user, most of them are created for home entertainment (streaming video/audio or games). A subset of the apps are created to monitor your health or are provide you with some control over your already automated home.

In contrast to expectations the current version of tvOS does not yet support HomeKit, Apple’s home automation framework (source). When HomeKit will be integrated in a new version of  tvOS, will it increase the popularity? Or will the medical sector will benefit from the new platform with innovations such as ResearchKit (source)? Or do we just need to look at Star Trek to see what the future will hold?

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