Apple’s next-generation Apple TV could be delayed if the company is unable to strike a deal with content providers to get live local programming for its Internet TV service, according to a report from Re/code.
The report claims Apple is aggressively courting local U.S. TV stations in hopes of getting their live programing — commercials and all — onto its new Internet service. Apple reportedly wants to stream that content on all iOS devices, rather than limiting it to a set-top box.
Apple’s new Internet service would not be unlike Dish’s Sling TV service, which streams live cable channels to mobile devices, PCs, set-top boxes and game consoles starting at $19.99 per month.
Although securing the content will “require the broadcasters to build new streaming infrastructure,” the primary stumbling block appears to be “money, not technical issues,” according to Re/code.
Apple’s pitch to TV networks is that it wants its service to have mass appeal — “this is supposed to be for 30 million people,” says one executive who has talked to Apple — and it believes local TV will be part of that. An alternative explanation: Apple may also be courting TV executives who would like to believe that local TV is important as the face of the network.
Re/code believes Apple’s revamped TV service may not launch by this fall. It’s unclear if Apple would launch its set-top box first without live programming.
Apple is widely expected to introduce a new TV subscription service alongside the new Apple TV set-top box at its annual WWDC developer conference, which will be held on June 8.
The new box will reportedly incorporate Siri, come with a redesigned remote control and support Apple Watch and more third-party apps.
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