Disney CEO Bullish on 'Game Changer' iPad
MarketWatch yesterday briefly noted comments from Disney CEO Bob Iger during his company's earnings conference that signaled his company's excitement over Apple's iPad and the possibilities for Disney's content on the device. According to the full transcript of the call, Iger was specifically asked about the impact of the iPad by analyst Doug Mitchelson of Deutsche Bank, and his responses indicated that Disney has already been thinking about how to take advantage of the platform.
We think it could be a game changer in terms of enabling us to create essentially new forms of content. Obviously it will be a great device to play games on and to watch videos because of the clarity of the screen. But the interactivity that it will allow on a portable device with such a high quality screen is going to enable us to really start developing products that is different than the product that you typically see on an internet connected computer or on a television set.
In addition to promoting possibilities for Disney eBook-like content, Iger also raised the possibility of television tie-ins, such the ability to create an interactive experience for shows from Lost to ABC News. And in particular, Iger pointed to Disney's ESPN ScoreCenter iPhone application and how the iPad opens up tremendous possibilities for enhancing the delivery of sports scores.
ESPN Score Center which is a great App on the iPhone and provides relatively rudimentary information scores basically suddenly we have an opportunity with a platform we can really make the scores come to life.
Apple and Disney have held a relatively close relationship in recent years, with Apple CEO Steve Jobs serving as a member of Disney's Board of Directors and largest individual shareholder by virtue of the company's purchase of Pixar in 2006. In recent months, Disney has been seen as a possible lead partner in Apple's rumored plans for a television subscription service, while Disney reportedly drew on Steve Jobs' and Apple's experience in developing plans for a makeover of the company's retail stores.