The rumored iTV — an Apple branded HDTV — may offer offer Internet-based content subscriptions with customized channel lineups, Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu says in a note to clients — as reported by “AppleInsider” (http://www.appleinsider.com).
He says the company is working hard on customized programming, in which customers would choose whichever channels or shows they want for a monthly subscription fee. It is negotiations to make this happen that’s holding up the release of the Apple television, not hardware or technical issues, he adds.
“This is obviously much more complicated (than current offerings) from a licensing standpoint,” Wu tells investors. “And in our view, would change the game for television and give Apple a big leg-up against the competition … Today, iTunes has a rich library of movies and TV shows but it is mostly for downloads and only movies are available for rentals (TV shows once were but were terminated in August 2011),” he wrote. “What’s missing is live broadcast television.”
The analyst says Apple must negotiate unique content deals that will allow the company to differentiate its product from other televisions on the market. One way is to integrate with a cable or satellite subscription already offered to customers. But the “more revolutionary way” would be to deliver live content via the Internet or IPTV, a method that would be more in line with the company’s existing iTunes and iCloud services.
Yesterday, the “Digitimes” site (http://www.digitimes.com) says the iTV is coming in the second or third quarter of 2012 and will be available in 32-inch and 37-inch sizes. The article also says that the set-top box Apple TV will live in in a “next generation” model, though the article doesn’t elaborate.
Apple has reportedly turned to Jeff Robbin, who helped create the iPod and the iTunes Store, to guide development of the company’s HDTV effort, reports “Bloomberg” (http://macte.ch/LOVFk), quoting unnamed “people with knowledge of the project.”
According to the sources, Apple is working to integrate seamless content search features into the device. “For example, instead of having to separately check to see if a movie or show is available through Netflix or a cable service, all the material could be integrated,” the sources told “Bloomberg.”
— Dennis Sellers