I find the introduction of Apple’s new Apple TV very interesting. I have noticed that there is as much interest in hacking the Apple TV unit, as in the capabilities of the unit itself! In fact, it appears as if there is perhaps more interest in the possibilities of a hacked unit, than for existing capabilities.
That leads one to wonder if in reality, the consumer market is actually more interested in a low cost, attractive, consumer friendly OPEN media center. The $300 price point of Apple TV is perfect. I would love to see this all taken a step further, and for a company like Dell to introduce their own media center unit. A unit that would be called something like “OpenTV”. It would be a general purpose Media Center Unit with a price point of about $250-$300, BUT, would come preloaded with LinuxMCE (www.linuxmce.org), but with a philosophy that would welcome people to install their Media Center Control Software of choice. This would be a wonderful new platform projects like the excellent XBox Media Center (XBMC) (www.xboxmediacenter.com) to be ported to, and would definately spark tremendous innovation in the Home Entertainment space.
People dont want “computers” in their living room…but they do crave the power and benefits that they could bring to their entertainment experience. A vendor adopting my OPENTV concept would be a welcome addition to this exciting new segment of the consumer market.