Apple devices dominate consumption of "TV Everywhere" viewing, according to a new study by Adobe Digital Index, a research arm of the software maker. Led by the iPad, Apple devices accounted for some 61 percent of such viewing, and Apple claimed three of the top four devices used to watch TV content other than your TV.
In the Digital Video Benchmark report for Q2 2015, Adobe found that 22.3 percent of users used Apple's iPad to watch TV Everywhere content. PCs (including Macs) were second on the list, with 18.3 share, while iPhones took up 18.2 percent and Apple TV claimed 12.8 percent.
The report was released on Friday, just ahead of Apple's September 9th media event, which is expected to feature new Apple TV hardware. Addressing just that, Adobe said that growth in TV Everywhere consumption is slowing, and that it could be because adoption is rubbing up against the pain point of hassle.
"What we're starting to see is that potentially some of the friction in the process of setting up TV Everywhere or figuring out which device you want to use might be starting to cause a slowdown," Tamara Gaffney, principal analyst for Adobe Digital Index (ADI), told CMO.com. "We think generally the demand is there, but we may have reached a tipping point where to get to the next level it needs to be simpler to sign in."
Matthew Roberts, ADI senior marketing analyst, noted that, "Everyone has a painful story of how they tried to watch something and they couldn't and they gave up. It really needs to be a simpler process."
The point of that narrative is that Apple could be just the company to capitalize on this and remove the friction, driving up adoption rates and ushering in new waves of cord cutters.
"It doesn't take much for something to come along that makes everything so much easier to use that adoption goes into a hockey-stick pattern," Ms. Gaffney said. "That could very well happen. That's what happened with the iPhone.”
Indeed, it is what happened to the iPhone, and it appears to be what Steve Jobs was alluding to when he told Walter Isaacson that Apple had "cracked" the code for making an-internet-connected settop box interface not suck.
Speculation is that Apple will announce universal search for Apple TV, something that could be powered by Siri. Our own Dave Hamilton opined this week that universal search could be what Mr. Jobs was talking about.
Which is where it all comes together: Apple enters markets where it can disrupt. Apple TV has been a hobby for years. And years. And years. Other things that we know include Apple working on a streaming service for many years, and people being less than satisfied with their existing experiences with settop box.
Adobe is essentially tying all these pieces in a nice, tasty-looking bow for us. If Apple does something innovative—and good—with Apple TV next week, it can disrupt this market and do very well for itself and for us, the consumer. Here's hoping!