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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:29 PM   #1
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Apple's New Vision for Apple TV 'Less Ambitious' Than Before




Apple's plans for its revamped Apple TV have been scaled back compared to what the company had previously intended, reports The Wall Street Journal. According to the publication, Apple was originally approaching media companies directly to obtain content rights for an ambitious a-la-carte-Internet-enabled TV set-top box, but has since gone in a different direction.
Quote:
In the current discussions, which involve at least two big media companies, Apple envisages working with cable companies, rather than competing against them, the people said. For programming, it would rely on cable providers to acquire programming rights from media companies, rather than acquire them on its own, the people said. Apple might consider seeking some rights directly in the future, one of the people said.
Apple had been trying to negotiate with companies like CBS and Disney to offer the networks' content directly to Apple customers over the Internet, cutting out cable and satellite providers like Comcast, Time Warner and DirecTV.*However, the media companies consistently pulled out of negotiations, fearing that any potential deal with Apple could damage their revenue streams.

Apple's ambitious plans went even further, as the company hoped to erase the distinction between live and on-demand TV, allowing users to watch any show at any time via iCloud as well as being able to skip commercials. In addition, Apple explored the possibility of paying media companies more for ad-free TV.

Having abandoned those lofty ideas in the face of failed negotiations, Apple is now asking content providers for the last five episodes of any given show rather than an entire season. This structure is similarly used by Hulu and is considered a standard amongst TV show streaming services.
Quote:
Apple's latest approach is far less ambitious. Instead of asking for full current seasons of shows, it is asking programmers for just the most recent five episodes of current-season shows--the standard for video-on-demand services in the TV industry, a person familiar with the matter said. Apple is also proposing to disable fast-forwarding on shows for three days after they air, which would protect TV channels.
The Wall Street Journal also suggests that it is unclear whether Apple will sell its own box or allow cable distributors to lease boxes to customers when the company is able to establish a deal for a television service.

Apple has long been in negotiations with Time Warner Cable for some sort of television-related product, with a recent report suggesting talks are ongoing. Apple may run into some trouble reaching a deal with TWC, however, as Comcast has reportedly inked a deal to purchase the company.

Apple may be planning to unveil a redesigned Apple TV box in April, which is rumored to include both app and game support, but it is unclear whether that product will also offer new television-related content.

Article Link: Apple's New Vision for Apple TV 'Less Ambitious' Than Before
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:30 PM   #2
jav6454
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How is less ambitious good? These media companies need to realize that what the WWF did is the most amazing service ever. More to the point, cable companies need to realize what AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile realized, they are just dumb pipes for us.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:31 PM   #3
levitynyc
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At this point, Apple should just take Apple TV out back and shoot it.

I own 3 of them and they are really getting long in the tooth. The UI is terrible and slow. Netflix barely works on it anymore.

The Roku 3 can do nearly everything the Apple TV can do, plus it has a better remote and it works with Amazon Prime.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:31 PM   #4
rcjh22
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This is so disappointing.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:32 PM   #5
dansix
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If Steve were alive, he would have gotten the deal done. He's probably the only one that could have gotten that deal done though.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:32 PM   #6
jonyive4
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I want:
iCloud with unlimited storage, let iCloud record all channels for you to your own iCloud space. Go to a particular day of TV programming by using Time Machine for iCloud TV. Streamed to my iPad. Easily search for an episode by typing in "Breaking Bad s03e12" in Spotlight. Only $99/year.
.
.
.
and I also want to touch Olivia Wilde.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:34 PM   #7
AustinIllini
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So this would be Microsoft winning. XBox One already does this stuff.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:37 PM   #8
Koodauw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dansix View Post
If Steve were alive, he would have gotten the deal done. He's probably the only one that could have gotten that deal done though.
Is this a time where the phrase "Steve would have never..." is actually applicable?

Hard to say, but I don't think the deal with ATT and the iPhone was exactly what Steve wanted either, but it was what they could work out. Who knows.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:39 PM   #9
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I don't often say that Apple should follow Google, but they should bypass cable companies altogether and go the Google Fiber route. They really need to stop being an aggregator for cable companies and be the source if cable companies aren't willing to play ball.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by AustinIllini View Post
So this would be Microsoft winning. XBox One already does this stuff.
...For 5x the price of an Apple TV.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:40 PM   #10
Eriden
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Content providers have been in "negotiations" with Apple for five or more years now. They don't want to play ball, because they fear Apple doing to TV with aTV what they did to music with itunes. No deals are forthcoming.

The thing I really want to see from the aTV is the App Store along with support for Bluetooth controllers. If Apple went out of its way to make it easy for developers, the so-called Steambox would be dead before it ever made its way into the hands of consumers. aTV could eventually be a viable competitor to Playstation and Xbox.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:41 PM   #11
akm3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonyive4 View Post
I want:
iCloud with unlimited storage, let iCloud record all channels for you to your own iCloud space. Go to a particular day of TV programming by using Time Machine for iCloud TV. Streamed to my iPad. Easily search for an episode by typing in "Breaking Bad s03e12" in Spotlight. Only $99/year.
.
.
.
and I also want to touch Olivia Wilde.
We want all the same things. Is it too much to ask?
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:41 PM   #12
gatearray
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Quote:
Originally Posted by levitynyc View Post
At this point, Apple should just take Apple TV out back and shoot it.

I own 3 of them and they are really getting long in the tooth. The UI is terrible and slow. Netflix barely works on it anymore.
Which version ATV are you using with a Netflix that "barely works on it" anymore? I've never heard of such a thing and it sounds like utter ******** to me so I'm curious.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:43 PM   #13
dannyyankou
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Koodauw View Post
Is this a time where the phrase "Steve would have never..." is actually applicable?

Hard to say, but I don't think the deal with ATT and the iPhone was exactly what Steve wanted either, but it was what they could work out. Who knows.
http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2011/...ne-no-carrier/
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:44 PM   #14
-AG-
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or..... it could just be an analyst over at WSJ that has made something up because his sources are no longer getting fed direct information from Apple R&D.

Pretty much EVERY Apple TV article and rumour has been loosely based on that one line from the Issacson book.

We don't know what Apple are going to offer in the future when it comes to the TV realm because up until recently it has been classified as nothing more than a "hobby" and anyone that says they do are purely speculating or trying to get hits to their page.

Lets wait and be pleasantly surprised.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:45 PM   #15
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So Apple is close to a deal with Time-Warner who is being purchased by Comcast for 40B ?

This is becoming a soap opera. Lol
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:46 PM   #16
SusanK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Koodauw View Post
Is this a time where the phrase "Steve would have never..." is actually applicable?

Hard to say, but I don't think the deal with ATT and the iPhone was exactly what Steve wanted either, but it was what they could work out. Who knows.

I don't think the poster was making a negative remark about Cook. Steve was persuasive. Don't know if he seduced them or just worried the devil out of providers. Whatever it was it worked. Founders cannot be replaced. Just the way it is. Steve had that passion and drive.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:47 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by dansix View Post
If Steve were alive, he would have gotten the deal done. He's probably the only one that could have gotten that deal done though.
If Steve were alive, he would have tasked Eddy Cue with getting the deals done, just as he did before, and the result would have largely been the same.

Don't forget, Steve Jobs wasn't able to sign a deal with Verizon for the original iPhone, and AT&T (Cingular) was the fallback. And before that Apple had to capitulate to the record labels on variable song pricing rather than being able to keep it at $0.99 per song across the board.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:50 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by dansix View Post
If Steve were alive, he would have gotten the deal done. He's probably the only one that could have gotten that deal done though.
To be fair, Eddy Cue has done all the industry dealing in the past. Jobs's personality was too coarse and inflexible to have done it by himself. But Jobs-era Apple got those big deals done because Steve had the internal force of will to see them through.

It remains to be seen what it'll end up as, but my feeling is Tim Cook doesn't have the tenacity to do an iTunes sort of industry shakeup. But then again, even Jobs was getting a lot of pushback from the TV industry while he was alive. Apple got lucky with music that the industry was on the ropes. TV/film is still relatively strong, despite piracy, and they don't feel the need to negotiate especially since cable companies own a lot of the content (and now it's rumored Time Warner is being bought by Comcast). It's a shame because we need Apple to shakeup this monopolistic industry a lot more than the record industry.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:51 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by dansix View Post
If Steve were alive, he would have gotten the deal done. He's probably the only one that could have gotten that deal done though.
Steve wasn't a messiah... He was a man. There will be better and there will be worse.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:51 PM   #20
LunaticSX
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Originally Posted by AustinIllini View Post
So this would be Microsoft winning. XBox One already does this stuff.
At 5 times the price, in a more complicated way, without AirPlay. Right.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:51 PM   #21
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Wrong direction

Move forward with the actual content providers...writers, producers, etc. Open a studio!. Distribute original content, buy Netflix and AMC for crissake, continue to license AMC's shows to the cable providers. The distribution rights to Walking Dead alone would line up these old school utility companies rather quickly.

Get in the driver's seat and then you can get in the living room. If the established market foundation isn't flexible enough for you, build your own for the consumer.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:51 PM   #22
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Apple should open up a studio for live action shows like Jobs did with Pixar. Make their own content a la Netflix.

At least experiment with something.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:53 PM   #23
Dreamer2go
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I don't trust this unless Apple unveils their product. Months later, we will know the back story!
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:54 PM   #24
jettredmont
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At first, I was very disappointed in this. Then I read that quote again.

Quote:
In the current discussions, which involve at least two big media companies, Apple envisages working with cable companies, rather than competing against them, the people said.
No ****. Of course Apple is claiming to these companies that they are going to work with them rather than compete! That's how negotiations go. You don't walk in with a knife and say "This is what I'm going to stab you in the back with. Now bend over!"

Quote:
For programming, it would rely on cable providers to acquire programming rights from media companies, rather than acquire them on its own, the people said.
... in other words, exactly what the current "apps" already do. So, this is describing negotiations for following the status quo of "app channels" on the ATV.

Quote:
Apple might consider seeking some rights directly in the future, one of the people said.
... and that's the most important line of them all.

In other news, the sky is blue and ice is cold.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 11:57 PM   #25
axual
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Channel / network management are babies

I am willing pay more per channel than they current receive from cable or satellite providers.

True, I could care less about 200 of 220 channels.

If a network or channel is not strong enough to hold an audience, then they should go bye bye.
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