Apple Aims to 'Erase Distinction Between Live and On-Demand' TV Content

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Aug 16, 2012.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001


    Following up on its story from yesterday about a possible forthcoming Apple set-top television box, the The Wall Street Journal had more details to share today.

    Apple aims to make it so viewers can watch any show at any time via a cloud-based DVR that would store TV shows online. The service would be designed so viewers could begin streaming a show minutes after it began airing live.
    The Journal says Apple has been in talks with cable services like Comcast and Time Warner Cable, as well as companies that control television content. The article notes that existing agreements between cable and content companies may not allow them to sign deals for Apple's device without content owner permission.

    CBS CEO Les Moonves said earlier this month that his company would be open to offering its content on a hypothetical Apple television depending "what the terms are" and "what we get paid". Apple is looking to offer past seasons of shows through iTunes on the device which are already available on iTunes, as well as all episodes from current seasons.

    The sort of cloud-based DVR that Apple is envisioning could be the motivation behind Apple's plans for a new 500,000 square-foot data center in Oregon, as well as an existing massive center in North Carolina.

    Article Link: Apple Aims to 'Erase Distinction Between Live and On-Demand' TV Content
  2. jacknv2 macrumors newbie

    Jun 11, 2007
    I called it! Posted this idea a few weeks back... This is really the only thing that makes sense and the only way to truly revolutionize the Cable TV industry.
  3. bushido Suspended


    Mar 26, 2008
  4. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3


    Nov 26, 2007
    This has the potential to ease up traffic jams, I think.

    I've spent tons of time watching traffic patterns, and I have come to suspect that a major show ending or going to commercial causes many people to leave wherever they are at roughly the same time and cause micro-traffic jams (where for seemingly no reason traffic at a spot hardly moves for five minutes but at almost any other time would flow quite freely.)
  5. Lotso macrumors 6502


    Jul 21, 2010
    OC, California
    This is it. This is what Steve Jobs ment when he said he "finally cracked it."
  6. tdtran1025 macrumors 6502


    Dec 26, 2011
  7. StuddedLeather macrumors 6502a

    Apr 20, 2009
    Brooklyn, NYC
  8. Billy Boo Bob macrumors 6502

    Billy Boo Bob

    Jun 6, 2005
    Dark Side Of The Moon
    One pushback that I see is from the Cable companies, who in many/most cases, double as the Internet providers. All this extra streaming bandwidth (coupled with the losses from people cutting the cable cord) is going to force them to massively upgrade their systems, which means the already high Internet prices are going to go even higher.

    And even if they cut deals with the big cable companies (assuming they can), I'm left out here with Mediacom, which is a minor player in the cable business.
  9. 3282868 macrumors 603

    Jan 8, 2009
    Keep the people plugged in to their mindless reality shows and corporate cable news networks. Why think for yourself? That's so 1999. :p

    10,000 Maniacs - Candy Everybody Wants

  10. nvbrit macrumors 6502


    Oct 12, 2007
    Reno, NV

    what on earth has a set top box got to do with traffic jams?!?!!!! :confused:
  11. iBreatheApple macrumors 68030


    Sep 3, 2011
    Well come on already! I've been waiting for quite some time now. :apple:
  12. jontech macrumors 6502

    Feb 26, 2010
  13. Lark.Landon macrumors 6502


    Aug 15, 2012
    So Cal
    Commercials generally last about 8 minutes now. So people feel free to run to the store or go pick something up real quick causing mini-traffic jams. It is an international phenomenon known as "jammin' " . :p
  14. lord patton macrumors 65816

    lord patton

    Jun 6, 2005
    This is exactly what I don't want: dozens of icons all representing different sources, like what's on the AppleTV today.

    They need to "erase the distinction" between any sources. I don't need to know if the feed is from Netflix, Hulu, HBO, ABC, YouTube, or whatever. I just want to say the name of the program (or description, or search query) and have the box give me what I want.
  15. GadgetDon macrumors 6502


    May 11, 2002
    If that's their plan, a cloud DVR - ain't gonna happen.

    Like it or not, TV shows are expensive to make, and those expenses are paid for by advertising. The money from digital sources is very small in comparison. DVR playbacks are counted if done within a certain number of days and played without commercial skipping (Neilsen families have special attachments that know when commercials are skipped). And there's both the national ads and local ads for the local station. So you'd need to store multiple copies of the "cloud dvr" shows for each local station.

    Yes, they could merge the existing service with a cable box, buy shows individually or by the season. Maybe even strike a deal for "one price lets you stream all prior seasons" (though they won't be negotiating by network, they'll be negotiating with the studios who made it - networks don't own the digital rights to any show they didn't produce themselves). But "watch last night's show without commercials" - that's still going to be "$2.00 please"
  16. Technokrat macrumors newbie

    Aug 16, 2012
    You need to check out the post about the future of TV from about two years back. A guest writer from Eye-Tracking Update posted exactly what you were talking about.
  17. Laird Knox macrumors 68000

    Jun 18, 2010
    That is why people shouldn't be watching TV while driving! :eek:
  18. Goftrey macrumors 68000


    May 20, 2011
    Wales, UK
  19. DisMyMac macrumors 65816


    Sep 30, 2009
    Our personal computers will soon be cable box menus. Fun.
  20. Tech198, Aug 16, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2012

    Tech198 macrumors G5

    Mar 21, 2011
    Australia, Perth

    A cloud based DVR ??

    Is this going to replace the "rumored" Apple television set ? Something tells me, maybe its too hard to do, so we'll settle with a "cloud based DVR" instead... people will go more crazy over that. (assuming its true)

    Then again... we've never knew Apple to be in the TV business either. Two years on from that, we ain't any further with production.

    ...One step at a time.......:apple:

    I never believe anything till it comes from Apples mouth.
  21. NumberNine macrumors regular

    May 12, 2011
    I smell a lame comment
  22. Zunjine macrumors 6502a

    Jun 26, 2009
    Commercial models change all the time. I would much prefer a service where I pay for the shows I like and get no adverts. I don't need or want 24, mindless television with constant advert breaks. My leisure time is far too precious to spend half of it being advertised to!

    For example, I have Netflix and I love having access to lots of old movies and TV shows for £5 a month. I was thinking recently how I'd be happy to pay a premium on top of that for some newer content and a wider range. I could see them banding it something like that - £5 for the basic range (mostly older shows and movies), £12 for the mid range (some newer TV shows and movies with one or two really up-to-date items) and maybe £25 for the deluxe package which gives you everything apart from a small range of pay-per-view items which you can watch "live" for a certain price but you could watch later for a slightly lower price (this way you get to cream those willing to pay the most but still sell to those more price sensitive later on).

    As it stands, DVRs and online catchup services, along with the channel surfing/mute button happy customers like me who don't even listen to, let alone watch the adverts, are undermining the old advertising revenue model. More and more of the ad spend is going on product placement and sponsorship for events. They could still get that revenue when they switched to an on-demand, advert free model.

    I'm not saying this will happen or that it would be easy. I'm only saying that commercial models change and there are those of us who would happily pay a premium for a service which offered less dross and a tighter range of advert free, quality programming.
  23. deannnnn macrumors 68020


    Jun 4, 2007
    New York City & South Florida
    This. Glad to see someone who understands why advertising exists. There is one other source of which TV shows are funded from though: affiliate fees. Cable companies pay big bucks to have the rights to give you the channels that you want. That's why our cable bills are so high. Contrary to popular belief, the cable companies don't actually keep all that money, most of it is paid to networks, who pay studios, who make our favorite shows.

    Advertising and paying your cable bill is what funds the creation of TV shows. Get rid of either and the quality of the shows we all love will go downhill fast.
  24. KnightWRX macrumors Pentium


    Jan 28, 2009
    Quebec, Canada
    A set-top box makes much more sense than a full blown TV set. I've been saying it for months, is the rumor mill catching on yet ? Apple has no advantage in competing in the "pixel array" space with the likes of LG, Sony, Panasonic, Sharp and Samsung.

    Where they do is in the content business. A set top box reaches a far wider audience with their licensed content.
  25. macUser2007 macrumors 65832

    May 30, 2007
    Let me get this right:

    -- it will be expensive,

    -- it will be like Tivo, but sexed up by being on a "cloud,"

    -- it will have ATV-like UI and

    -- it will be locked like Fort Knox.

    Oh, and you still have to be locked to a cable provider, in addition to Apple.

    I just can't wait for this cluster-fck between the Cable Cos and Apple! :rolleyes:

    All together now, grab your ankles and say "AH-pple!"

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