Apple Entering TV Business?

25 Mar

SCRI's NewsBriefs

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Apple is reported to be in talks with Comcast about entering into a streaming TV service. Comcast just signed a deal with Netflix last month. While the Comcast/Apple discussions are considered very preliminary, Apple is also reported to be in discussions with programming companies about acquiring additional entertainment or news contents.  Read more

These reports support the notion that Apple is getting more serious about its long anticipated strategy of entering the TV business.  A new Apple TV service could take one of two forms: An Apple set-top box that costs about $99 and delivers the TV service of Comcast or other cable-TV providers, or an Apple set-top box delivering Apple’s own TV service over the Internet.

Neither company had any official comment on the story originally reported by the Wall Street Journal yesterday. THE WSJ goes on to say that any deal between Comcast and Apple to create a new streaming-video service with special access to subscribers would likely draw close regulatory scrutiny and spark a new debate over whether cable companies can carve out a part of its pipe for content providers.

“The companies aren’t close to a deal and there is no guarantee they will strike one. But the talks have cast a spotlight on the type of arrangement Apple is proposing: one that would treat its video traffic as a “managed service” traveling in Internet protocol format, similar to cable video-on-demand and phone services.”

Apple was cited as the most profitable and biggest revenue-producing new media company in 2013, despite a year-over-year decline in its net income, according to SNL Kagan data. Microsoft retained its No. 2 spot in SNL Kagan’s rankings of new media companies by profits and operating revenues for 2013.

Apple is a major player in the broadcast pro video space with their iconic Final Cut Pro editing software, Mac workstations and other software like Motion, Compressor etc.

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