Though many pundits are predicting some sort of Video iPod. I think something much more interesting is in store for us.
If you look back to the beginning of the year, Steve Jobs declared this year, ‘The Year of HD’. Apple upgraded it’s iMovie and Final Cut Pro video editing apps, introduced wide screen LCD displays and more importantly introduced QT 7 with the H.264 codec. With this codec content can leap frog DVD in quality.
The DVD is DEAD
There is a big boom in HD TVs these days. Comcast cable is expanding it’s HD offerings and bundling HD DVRs with it’s new subscriber packages (I’ll review this in a later review). Unfortunately, the DVD, the previous high quality delivery medium, doesn’t deliver HD in it’s previous version. Blu-Ray and HD DVD are on the horizon but are having to go through a format war and more meddling by Hollywood.
Now I think Apple is going to seize the opportunity and put it all together! Using a delivery app like the iTunes Music Store, create an ‘iMovie Music Store’ to deliver H.264 HD content to users computers. But, watching a video or movie on your computer is fine but it’s more preferable to relax and watch a movie or TV show on your wide screen HD TV. How do you get your program to your TV? I sometimes hook up the DVI cable connector from the laptop to the TV equipment and then hook up a audio cable – what a hassle…
The Real Surpirse
I think the coolest thing to be possilby announced is a WiFi A/V connector for your TV setup. It could be either like a fancier AirPort Express or a little set-top box. Downloaded HD content once downloaded, could the be easily picked up wirelessly by your new HDVideo Express box and delivered to your TV. Now you will have a ‘lean back’ compared to a ‘lean forward’ video watching experience.
If these things happen at today’s announcement, I believe HD will really take off. I was really first introduced to HD through finding HD quality TV shows over the last year. I did a lot of moving and didn’t have access to cable or a TV. I found you can download HD TV shows in higher quality than can be viewed from my friends regular Digital Cable TV.
If Apple makes a compelling easy to use online Video Rental store, the local DVD will have some serious competition. The DVD has to be physically delivered and I personally, I hate DVDs, they are slow and I dislike how producers can keep you from skipping over startup screens etc. No one likes to be forced to watch content. Oh, and did I say they are slow? Waiting for a disk to startup and then find your content is a pain.
Oh yeah, and One More Thing…
Well, yeah, with all this in place, a Video iPod could be a nice accessory to view this content on the go, but I think it’s more of an accessory – maybe announced at a later time. Anyway, it’ll be fun to see what’s on tap today. Maybe you’ll be able to download some Madonna videos too?