Michael Gartenberg in Engadget on the Google vs. Apple rivalry for television inputs.
Google wants input one on your TV. Apple wants input two. The difference? Input one is where your cable box goes. Input two was where your VCR or DVD player used to live. It’s a port that’s up for grabs.
That’s only part of the battle. Cable TV companies will not easily relinquish input 1. Why?
There’s nothing wrong with Google’s approach, except it’s hard. Really hard. It’s like trying to take the Russian front hard. In winter. No one’s succeeded in the past nor are they likely to in the future—and certainly not with any weapon that requires an IR blaster. The cable companies have a very firm lock on the cable box. They don’t want to open it. They don’t want to share it. They want to keep it to themselves. The last thing they’re going to do is allow themselves to be commoditized by Google or anyone else.
Look ahead one year when Apple TV has apps, and iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad have apps that stream television and movies through Apple TV to the television. This could be a short battle and a short lived war.