Apple TV outsold by Amazon’s Fire TV in 2014, now the fourth most popular streaming device

According to recent data released by Parks Associates, Apple TV currently is the fourth most popular streaming media device based on 2014 sales, down from third place in 2013. Roku, according to the data, is the most popular streaming media device manufacturer with 34 percent of the market, while Google’s Chromecast accounted for 23 percent of sales.

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Parks-Associates--2014-US-Streaming-Media-Device-Sales-by-Brand-V2Apple TV’s fall from third to fourth in 2014 is largely due to the introduction of Amazon’s Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, which now hold the third place spot. Although, rumors of a refreshed Apple TV likely dampened sales somewhat too. Overall, Amazon, Apple, Roku, and Google together accounted for 86 percent of all streaming media device sales. In terms of usage, however, 20 percent of U.S. households are said to own and regularly use a streaming media device.

Roku’s offerings, of course, are the most used with 37 percent of households regularly using a Roku box. Google’s Chromecast is used regularly by 19 percent of households, while 17 percent consistently use an Apple TV. Amazon’s Fire TV and Fire TV Stick are used by 14 percent of households.

Apple is expected introduce a new Apple TV during an event on September 9th. The refreshed device is expected to feature redesigned hardware and software, a new remote, support for an App Store, Siri integration, and more. The launch of a new Apple TV will likely help push the device back towards the top of the streaming device market, even though it still won’t be as affordable as a Chromecast or lower-end Roku models.


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  1. This doesn’t surprise me one bit. The Amazon Fire TV is superior to the Apple TV in every single respect. The only thing the Apple TV has going for it is AirPlay Mirroring (which doesn’t work properly with all apps since some developers choose to block it) and integration with iTunes and even this isn’t that good since as far as I know Apple Music doesn’t work with the Apple TV. An Apple TV 4 can’t come soon enough…

    • taoprophet420 - 7 years ago

      Will be at least 2 years before a 4K Apple TV is released. Is barely any content in 4K. And don’t think Apple will create or sale its own 4K content. Also of Apple is using an a8 processor. So 4K is definitely not coming to th upcoming Apple TV

      • FERNANDO! (@brutedawg) - 7 years ago

        I understand future proofing, but I don’t think 4K will be in enough homes or have enough content to justify supporting it.

  2. RP - 7 years ago

    Streaming to circumvent cable is exploding. Everyone i know has a chromecast stick. You ho to Walmart or Target and they are on an end cap for $25.
    Apple has been chasing networks and chasing their own tail instead of just focusing on services that wanted to be streamied ñike Netflix and Hulu.

    So will a new Apple TV be successful after ignoring it for so long? I think so, but they did give up on it and give customers to the competition while fruitlessly begging the establishment instead of leap froging them.

    • gkbrown - 7 years ago

      Apple TV and Chromecast aren’t in the same category. However, the Apple TV as it stands is a weak competitor to Roku, Fire, or Chromecast. A next-gen ATV is likely to be a worthy successor.

      • pdoobs - 7 years ago

        Roku’s offerings are pretty hard to beat, both on price and experience. And let’s be real the Apple TV remote is something any Apple TV owner is tired of constantly losing in the couch cushions.

      • Scott (@ScooterComputer) - 7 years ago

        @gkbrown “Apple TV and Chromecast aren’t in the same category.”

        Wha??? Look two comments down. You may not think so, but a heckuva lot of consumers do. Apple’s problem here is a longer term perception issue; if these competitors gain a mindset hold in the marketplace (and all signs point to that they have, especially the Chrome Stick), then Apple will have a MUCH more difficult time going forward without significant price reductions. If consumers BELIEVE that $25 Chrome Stick is equivalent to a $99 AppleTV, Apple loses almost every time. The only time they “win” is when a walled-in Apple ecosystem user is COMPELLED to pay the extra $$ to buy an Apple TV, and that sure doesn’t make for a great experience. Otherwise, consumers aren’t going to buy 2 devices that they “see” perform the same task just so AirPlay works.

        Your argument is very similar to ones I heard back in the late ’80s about the Mac vs PC. And that didn’t end well. Apple should have learned the valuable lessons from the past, instead it seems they have decided to ignore that time. (That isn’t to say that Apple should do what they did then; it is to say that they did a lot of things wrong, but there ARE valuable lessons to be learned from what was done wrong AND right.)

  3. epicflyingcat - 7 years ago

    Love my Chromecast. Have no idea why anyone would need anything else to be honest.

    • Steve32 - 7 years ago

      same here, I own both, but ever since I got my Chromecast, I stopped using the Apple TV, and it’s now collecting dust.

  4. bb1111116 - 7 years ago

    From the article; “while 17 percent consistently use an Apple TV. Amazon’s Fire TV and Fire TV Stick are used by 14 percent of households.”

    If those numbers are accurate, how can Fire TV/Stick be ahead of Apple TV?

    As for the Apple TV, mine works fine for the things I use it for (Netflix/Amazon Prime/YouTube/HBO Now).

    • Scott (@ScooterComputer) - 7 years ago

      Sales LAST year versus marketshare historically. Of ALL the AppleTVs sold in the past several years, 17% marketshare. In the last year or so, FireTV/Stick outsold enough to get to 14% overall. What this REALLY shows is that AppleTV is not only slipping, it is slipping fast. Apple should have released an update last year/this spring. They have had all the hardware (A9). It is unlikely, at this point, that they’ll be able to stop the slip. And if they can’t, they’ll lose the leverage they obviously need to get the content deals that have been stymying them. Also, the lack of an AppleTV App Store is beyond puzzling, considering that Roku and Amazon both have them.

  5. taoprophet420 - 7 years ago

    Apple TV has not been updated for years so it not surprising Roku is outselling it. Apple TV has remained a hobby for Apple and hopefully that changes next month.

  6. Tim - 7 years ago

    Everyone that I know who uses a chromecast uses Showbox with it that’s it.

  7. prius3 - 7 years ago

    In Europe the selection of channels available on the Apple TV has been, and still is, abysmal. Netflix and the 70€ price was the reason for me to move to it. The lack of an integrated DVB-C/-T receiver, or stream of available channels (at least those freely available on DVB-T/DVB-C channels), Sky, etc. make the use of the Apple TV limited. Amazon Prime does not have an app, you can watch Amazon content only using Airplay and after buying content on a Mac (no, you cannot buy content on the iPhone Amazon Instant Video app).
    No HBO now, iTunes movies sold and rent at very high prices (a blu-ray of a 6 month movie can cost 10-12€ in an online shop, an iTunes movie is always more expensive; same thing with TV series).
    Moreover the user interface is poor, there is no listing available by language (e.g. English only content), the apps are poorly written (Netflix user interface is mediocre and quite chaotic), Apple Music is not integrated.
    The hardware is really neat and good quality. But that is not why I buy an Apple TV.
    So, I wonder, why should the average Apple user buy one?
    And in Germany the offer of channels is not that bad, compared to say, Italy – where movies on iTunes where not available till a few years ago.
    Content, content, content. UI UI UI. TV TV TV. Especially TV – it is an Apple TV, that delivers not a hint of TV (and you cannot connect anything to it that does, like a DVB-T/-C receiver).

  8. Steve McVey - 7 years ago

    The problem with AppleTV is the limited app/channel library. I can’t even play local content that isn’t an approved iTunes format, which is idiotic. AirPlay/screen mirroring was a neat trick but isn’t a real solution. I started with an AppleTV 2, which wasn’t useful until Jailbroken for use with XBMC, etc. Once that loophole was closed with the ATV 3, I quickly switched over to Roku and Plex. Capability-wise, Roku DESTROYS the AppleTV.

    However — none of these competitors’ boxes have the slick polish of the AppleTV UI. If Apple really does open up an App Store to the Apple TV, assuming it’s not too late, I expect it will jump to the front of the pack somewhat quickly, so long as the developers are ready to rock very, very quickly. I have several Roku boxes in my house, and if the ATV4 is released and lives up to the hopes I have for it, I will very quickly be replacing several Roku boxes and switching over from built-in Samsung SmartTV apps to an AppleTV.

    Plex for AppleTV, anyone?

  9. This is all fascinating until you realize it’s completely fabricated without an ounce of truth behind the numbers. The purpose here is to sell Parks Associates. I can unequivocally guarantee that 100% of these research companies makes up numbers without any research. Not 100% of the time, that varies from company to company, but for some, most of the time. When you’ve worked for some of the companies they cover, things are easier to cross-reference for accuracy.

  10. Paul Jenkins - 7 years ago

    Sling TV. I’m a cord cutter, and I used ATV for Netflix, Hulu+, and a bit of AirPlay. I’m an Apple guy so I lived with that over the Roku. Sling TV came out and I could AirPlay from my Macbook or iOS device, but then I was tying up a device AND getting some image quality problems from original signal getting relayed by wifi twice (to the iDevice and back to the ATV). Roku came along and fixed all that. Direct connection from router and includes Sling TV as a channel. Look I still like my ATV, but it’s been used once, as a backup, in months because why bother with it? Sad, Apple. Very sad. Maybe Apple will release it’s own new package at some point, but for $20 a month I have everything I want.

  11. Brian Richards - 7 years ago

    I only have experience with the Apple TV and the Roku. We own a couple of Roku TV’s and a number of Rokus. all work great over wifi. We used Apple TV shortly. We found that much like the Xbox it can’t really stram over wifi consistently. It really needs to be hooked up to ethernet to not have stutter and buffering issues. I recently had a customer who had the same issue and hardwiring fixed it. It seems to make no difference how good your wifi is. Some boxes just don’t stream properly over wifi.

  12. Matt Wilson - 7 years ago

    I bought Apple TV to use AirPlay and Netflix – other than that Apple TV is poor, I used a droid box on holiday to watch streamed Internet content, the next Apple TV needs safari or its dead in the water.


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