Apple’s plan to conquer live TV streaming appears to have hit a road bump. In fact, it looks as though the electronics giant will be pushing the launch of the service until sometime in 2016. The cause of Apple’s headaches is likely the TV networks themselves, who have been reportedly giving Apple a tougher time in negotiations than other content providers have in the past.
Apple’s plans for its Apple TV set top box would take the service beyond its current form, in which it offers recorded shows. The live TV streaming service would do just what you’d expect: provide live streaming of major TV channels, like CBS, Fox, ESPN, and others. Apple hasn’t indicated which channels it’s pursuing because it hasn’t officially admitted to preparing such a streaming service. Apple reportedly decided not to announce the new service when it became apparent that it wouldn’t be able to strike deals in time for a 2015 launch.
Apple is used to getting excellent terms, which seems to be part of the problem. Apple doesn’t have the position it had when working with the music industry – and content providers have the benefit of hindsight here. The TV networks saw how the terms of Apple’s music deals worked out for the electronics company (and for labels) so they’ll be looking for more favorable terms – and Apple has the opposite in mind. The company reportedly wanted to assemble a live TV streaming service that would cost customers just $40 per month. Networks, on the other hand, are reportedly expecting Apple to pay more than cable or satellite services for access to TV channels.
Aside from the negotiations, Apple also needs to make sure the infrastructure is in place to provide live TV channels across the country. It has partnered on similar projects with Akamai Technologies, which is widely expected to help Apple deliver the streaming content when the service eventually goes live.