Apple CEO Tim Cook has referred to the company’s Apple TV product as a hobby in the past. Hobby it may be, but the product is generating the company a nice chunk of revenue. According to CNBC, Cook confirmed during an investor meeting on Friday that the product brought in $1 billion in revenue during 2013. That’s a tiny fraction of the company’s overall $171 billion in revenue reported for the full year, but it’s also impressive for a side project. During the call, Cook admitted that the device has, perhaps, graduated to a more serious product when he said it’s “difficult to call it a hobby.” It certainly isn’t – that revenue figure equates to about 10 million units sold.
Also of note is when Tim Cook made that statement. One has to wonder why he’s revealing the success of the Apple TV during an investor meeting, but we have one idea. Several reports have suggested Cupertino is gearing up to launch a brand new Apple TV – one that the company will probably take a lot more seriously – as soon as next month. Is Tim Cook trying to show investors that the Apple TV is much more than just a hobby right now? It sure as heck looks like it.
The next-generation Apple TV is expected to offer several new features. It may double as a router, may have its own appstore with a focus on gaming, and will reportedly allow users to control their cable TV channels – similar to the set-top-box-like experience you get with an Xbox One today. With its own app store and a real-push behind controlling our living rooms, Apple stands to make a lot more than $1 billion in revenue each year off of the product.
Some hobby, huh?