At Apple's Spring Forward event this week the Apple TV saw its specs unchanged but its price slashed from $99 to $69. If you already have one, now's a great time to grab another. That's what I'm doing. Yep, it's another episode of "first world problems," cats and kittens.
Versatility in a little black box
My family and I have enjoyed Apple TVs ever since the first one came out. It looked like a Mac mini and ran hot enough to keep your coffee warm in the wintertime. We eventually went to the smaller second-gen black Apple TV, which we still use.
We subscribe to Crunchyroll, so we can get our fix of asian anime and costume dramas; we regularly use the YouTube channel to share funny videos and entertain friends when they came over. We streamed a Sleater-Kinney concert when we had a friend over for dinner last week.
There are other reasons we love the Apple TV. It's simple to stream content from the Mac and the iPad onto it, for example. We're able to catch new episodes of shows we like to watch without having to deal with our cable provider's ads or sketchy on demand service.
The HomeKit connection
HomeKit is Apple's framework for controlling devices in the home. We've been hearing about since June of 2014, when Apple talked about it at WWDC. So far, there haven't been a lot of devices that take advantage of it.
Getting more Apple TVs into people's homes isn't just about a better bottom line for Apple. It's also about laying the groundwork for HomeKit. Even the current generation model is a link between those devices and Siri control on the iPhone and iPad. And within the next few weeks, the Apple Watch too.
If Apple gets a few million more Apple TVs into the home, then HomeKit apps and devices will be that closer to critical mass once the technology is ready for prime time.
Patience is rewarded
I've set up an entertainment system in our bedroom, but I haven't plugged in an Apple TV upstairs yet. I've been waiting for a big refresh, because the Apple TV hasn't been touched except for software since March of 2013. That big refresh hasn't happened yet.
Regardless of what the future holds for Apple TV, the current device and the lowered price make it practically an impulse buy for many of us; $69 is just a bit more than a AAA game for the PlayStation 4 or Xbox One. You can spend more on a Roku box or an Amazon Fire TV.
Last year Apple cut the price of the MacBook Air by $100 and had a kick ass quarter for Mac sales. Now they're hoping lightning will strike twice by dropping the Apple TV's price by one-third.
I predict a lot of people are going to see the repriced Apple TV as a great value, and will jump at the chance to save some money and add Apple connectivity to another room in the house.
Will you be purchasing your first Apple TV, or additional ones for your home? Let me know in the comments!