New info from JMP Research’s Alex Gauna (via Barron’s) shows that Apple’s “one more hobby” is indeed a success among consumers. Gauna found that the Apple TV is sold out across the U.S. at Apple Store retail locations, after calling more than 20 stores.
That puts Apple on pace to sell 1 million of the little black boxes per quarter. While those aren’t iPad numbers (the tablet is expected to hit 4.5 million per quarter), it’s a success from Apple’s perspective, considering the relative disappointment of the original Apple TV. Also, if Apple is having trouble keeping the device in stock, that means its own estimates about initial sales were probably more modest.
It’s good news for Apple’s looming battle with Google TV, too, which is sure to be a topic at NewTeeVee Live next month. Being early to market and priced well will mean that Apple already has a foothold in many homes before Google’s product even appears. It’ll have to innovate and up its game on the software side if it wants to hold that ground, however. Apps would be a good start.
Apple TV will also have to up its game internationally if it wants to hold out against the Google onslaught. A lack of content in countries other than the U.S. (no Netflix), no TV rentals, etc.) will definitely make it less appealing to customers residing outside the U.S. A check on stock at Canadian Apple Stores, for instance, reveals the product is still available at many locations.
Even still, sales of 1 million Apple TV units per quarter adds up to $400 million a year in additional revenue, which, while not a huge number compared to Apple’s other product lines, definitely doesn’t hurt. Especially when it makes more per unit than it ever did before.
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