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New data bodes well for Apple's TV effort, but Chromecast could be Google's Trojan Horse

Oscar Raymundo | June 5, 2015
Over 60 percent of premium TV streaming was done on an Apple device. So what could go wrong in Apple's master plan? The fact that Chrome, not Safari, is the browser of choice for most online TV viewers.

"This could really affect the cycle upgrade for the iPad," Gaffney said. "Apple needs to give people more ways to use it, not just to watch video."

The iPhone 6 Plus is the new tablet and the iPad is the new television.

Chromecast could be a Trojan horse

Even though Apple's lead in streaming TV is quite considerable, total market share domination is not yet a sure thing.

According to the ADI, most viewers use Chrome--not Safari--when streaming TV on a desktop or mobile browser. Chrome browsing accounts for almost 40 percent of TV watching sessions--rather suspect considering that iOS is by far the top operating system and Android devices account for only 15 percent. The reason for iOS user choosing Chrome instead of the built-in browser to watch TV online could be Google's sneaky, little Chromecast. Or, maybe Mac users aren't so fond of Safari, still second with 32 percent share.

"The data suggests that Apple users don't have brand loyalty to Safari and will easily displace the built-in apps," Gaffney said. "This should be worrisome for Apple."

Google might be able to catch up in the online TV battle and spoil Apple's total conquest by using its already-popular Chromecast as a way to get cord-cutters to invest further in a Chrome-based TV ecosystem. Based on streaming TV's surging popularity--views nearly tripling in just a year--Apple better act fast if it wants a majority of TV viewers to stick with Apple TV.

"Considering how fast online video is growing, we have about 12 to 18 months and then the boat will have sailed," Gaffney said. "Most early adopters will already be invested in one of these platforms and the rest of the households will follow. It's like what happened when iTunes came out: Google was just not fast enough."


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