What tvOS and the Apple TV could be
I LOVE THIS IDEA! IT IS AN EXCELLENT IDEA!
I would add that it may be good for them to have different tiers of their Apple TV, one for pro gaming as you said, and some cheaper models that are more basic as it already is. So they could compete with regular streaming tv services and also the gaming market separately. It think taking on the top gaming platforms is a bold move, which is very aspirational. I'd have to say they aren't ready for that yet. I really feel that they should make their own market and carve out a space that merges mobile gaming with online gaming. If they up their game in this I seem them competing with NVIDIA shield, but not X-Box or Playstation.
I think Nintendo currently has everyone beat in merging pro gaming with portable gaming with the Switch.
I think this is the model Apple should try to take on by making a switch gaming style iPhone Pro that would be used in companion with the Pro TV. This is what they'd need to do to really take on the the Pro-Gaming Market.
I've written similar comments and blog posts about this as well.
Here's a link that takes you to past posts I've written about the Apple TV's potential:
In their next upgrade I absolutely agree with you that specs upgrades are absolutely necessary to lead the streaming tv market. Just supporting 4K isn't enough, they need to support higher bandwidth and gaming experience, so it can at least be on the same level as iPad Pros and the new iPhones. Promoting the iPhone in neglect of everything else is a bad trend Apple is following, which will bring about the decline of Apple in the end. I see it looking as bad as it was when Steve Jobs got fired if they continue to have tunnel vision on iPhone only. Augmented reality won't be the fix all either. I'd suggest that instead of trying to make a new evolutionary product they need to enhance their current product lines.
I think they should include a gaming controller package for those who want it for gaming, and include it as one price that includes the controller.
I actually think it would be smart for the next upgrade in iMacs to be allowed to be used as monitors for Apple TV gaming as you mentioned. I think not just cloud gaming though, that too, but also plugging the apple tv into the iMac monitor and play. It makes since for them to allow iMacs to be supported as monitors since they have 4K & 5K iMacs, and they have stopped making their own displays. These combination of Apple Pro TV, with iMac's would really compete well in the pc gaming market if Apple wants to make their iMac's beefy enough to handle the high intensity gaming people like. If they need to pursue licensing to use iMac monitors as TVs, so be it, but I don't think that would be necessary for just plugging in their Apple TV. That being said the Macs could easily just have apple tv capabilities built into them in the future. This could eventually start a new market of simply stand a lone apple tv monitors as well. I feel these two apple tv options may be preferable in the future.
Actually they could easily include tvOS apps in Macs with a simple upgrade to to macOS. It could be done with the current hardware and a os upgrade. I'd like to see this happen when they release macOS 11. I really want to see them become more aspirational in their OS updates. What if iOS 11 and macOS 11 could work more injunction with each other. That would be a notable update. Something the new hard ware should be worthy of. If they are going to make promises of not neglecting the pro lines, they really need to take OS upgrades into consideration.
I haven't taken on pc gaming because using a keyboard and mouse for it is dull, using the Apple gaming controller would really work and be pretty cool. And they don't need to go all high intensity to to do this, just playing the simple IOS and tvOS games on an iMac would be huge benefit to the iMac gaming experience, which is now rather limited.
It's really a sore spot to think that the 27 iMac has less useful & enjoyable apps and games then a 5 inch screened iPhone. The trend towards mobile apps and games, neglects Macs, and this makes the thousands of dollars of investment in a Mac Pro, less reasonable. So yes Tim Cook and Apple Team: please support iOS and tvOs games on MacOS in the future.