Apple, who has had a fair amount of success selling hardware that lets users stream TV shows and movies, is now considering stepping into the role of content gatekeeper.
A report from Re/code, citing various industry executives, says that Apple is currently in talks with some TV programmers about crafting its own pay-TV service.
According to the sources, it would look something like Sling TV – Dish's new offering.
What Dish's Sling TV does, and presumably what any Apple web-TV product would do, it allow people to stream a smaller amount of TV programming – for instance a dozen channels as opposed to the hundreds you get with traditional cable. Of course, the point of such an endeavor would be to capture the attention of the cordcutting crowd, who have ditched cable (due to its hefty price and inflexibility) but still want to be able to watch some traditional live TV.
For Dish, one of the big draws is ESPN. Sports are what cordcutters usually miss the most.
It's important to note that if this were to occur, it would be a hell of a long way down the road. From Re/code:
Apple has shown programmers demos of the proposed service, sources say. But talks seem to be in the early stages, which means terms like pricing and timing aren’t close to being ironed out. Several programmers say they’ve yet to start talks with Apple at all.
Still, Apple has the method for distributing TV programming. It makes sense, as least from a logistical standpoint, that Apple is strongly considering taking control of some of the content that its users watch.
Image via Rob DiCaterino, Wikimedia Commons