Why the Apple Television rumors are more believable this time around

“Another year, another rumor that Apple is planning to enter the pay-TV business,” Victor Luckerson writes for TIME Magazine.

“There is at least one reason to give more credence to this long-running rumor now than in years past,” Luckerson writes. “In the last six months, HBO, CBS and Nickelodeon have announced plans for streaming networks outside the traditional cable bundle, and Sony and Dish Network are offering variants on the traditional bundle distributed via the Web.”

Luckerson writes, “Now that others have cracked pay-TV’s walled garden, maybe Apple will feel it’s time to smash the wall completely.”

Full article here.

Related article:
Apple in talks with TV programmers about its own over-the-top Web TV service, sources say – February 4, 2015

15 Comments

  1. Well, these rumors aren’t really of any that significant. Just a recreation of what some other companies are already doing.

    Not complaining. it’s another step in the right direction. But it’s not of any new hardware. So of course these rumors are more believable.

    1. I really think this is a “be careful what you wish for” situation. When every channel goes a la carte, do you think paying 10 bucks a month for each HBO, Espn, Nick, etc will be more or less expensive? Sure do don’t get what you don’t watch, but if you want content from more than 5 channels, you are now paying more for that configuration.

          1. Not really. About $30/month would buy you season passes for 12 shows.

            It all depends on how much TV you watch. If you watch more than the average American, a $90/month cable bill works out to less than $2/hour, so that isn’t so bad. For a light consumer like me, a la carte is a huge savings.

      1. You are right, this will change the economics.

        It will be a lot more expensive to have 1000 channels.

        It will be cheaper to just get HBO and nothing else (like I will probably do).

        It will be more expensive for people who want a few dozen channels. HOWEVER, if channels live and die on individual subscriptions the competition for quality will be insane. The shovel-ware channels will quickly die off.

        So people may spend more, but get better TV for their money.

  2. Wasn’t Apple at some point supposed to have been working with TimeWarner on some Apple-designed cable box or device until Comcast jumped in and gobbled up TWC? Maybe these rumors are just a continuation of that project. I’d sure be happy if I could only pay for the channels I watch but that’s very unlikely to happen. If I could just order some educational (science & history) channel package at half the price I’m paying now for hundreds of channels I’d be quite satisfied.

    1. Here’s a happy thought:

      You are already paying for only the channels that you watch. You just don’t like the price.

      I am sure the cable company would be happy, if it was logistically possible, to stop delivering the channels you don’t want to see. They would just continue charging you the same price.

      Cable companies aren’t going to give anyone a discount until we start cutting cords.

      1. I would be *happy* to pay the same price and turn off channels I don’t actually watch — some of which pay the cable company (e.g. religious and advertising channels), and some of which I pay for (e.g. various other channels I NEVER EVER watch).

        Yes, I am theoretically paying more for “less”. But the “less” doesn’t actually affect me since I don’t watch shows on those channels.

        I want the ability to give specific positive reinforcement to the channels I actually watch/care about.

  3. I bought a new TV at the weekend. Very cool with features like Wifi, apps like Netflix etc. The only thing that would have made it perfect is if the AppleTV was there instead of the Apps.
    I still have hooked up the AppleTV but it would be great if it were built in.

  4. The customer-hating ‘package’ BS is finally beginning to die and à la carte, which everyone wanted decades ago, is becoming real.

    Cable TV companies: Go fsck yourselves.

    (I’m saying fsck a lot lately with regard to the ISP/media oligarchy. I want to apologize. Then again…).

    1. We will long for days when 60-80 bucks bought most basic cable stations. Paying by channel will hurt your wallet more than you can imagine.

      8 bucks for netflix, 10 bucks for HBO, 10 bucks for ESPN, etc, etc, …

      Do the math

      1. I have no doubt they’ll pull that trickery. But I’m not much of a boob-tuber. Before I yanked out the cable TV I was at $60 a month for crap with no whipped cream on top. For $60 à la carte I can come up with something tasty.

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