HBO Confirms Negotiations to Allow Fox and Universal to Participate in iCloud for Movies

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Last week, we noted with the launch of the new Apple TV and iTunes in the Cloud for movies that Fox and Universal were not participating in the iCloud video streaming due to contractual obligations with HBO. At the time CNET indicated that the issue was a temporary one and that HBO and the affected studios would be working to address the holdup in the near future.

The Wall Street Journal now reports that HBO is indeed working with Fox and Universal to loosen its restrictions on film distribution, with a spokesperson for HBO confirming the negotiations.
HBO isn't planning to give up its exclusive windows, for which it pays hundreds of millions of dollars a year, and which allow it to beam movies to its online service HBO Go as well as to its traditional TV channels. But HBO is relaxing terms to let users of iCloud and other services send movies they already own to other devices during those windows, an HBO spokesman said.

HBO agreed to loosen its arrangement with Warner Bros., which is working with iCloud, and also is in talks with Universal and Fox to do the same, the spokesman added.
Sources at Fox suggest that the roadblock on iCloud will be lifted "as soon as within weeks", while Universal sources also indicate that a resolution is near.

Article Link: HBO Confirms Negotiations to Allow Fox and Universal to Participate in iCloud for Movies
 

daxomni

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Jun 24, 2009
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I can only imagine what this is going to cost if HBO is truly on board. HBO has steadfastly refused to work with services like Netflix until they double or triple the current monthly fee.
 

3282868

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Jan 8, 2009
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With all the recent rumors regarding the [possible] Siri TV, does anyone believe CBS and the like will come to an agreement with Apple for a la carte programming? If not, will that be the deciding factor in its possible release? As HBO loosens its restrictions for iTunes Cloud, I would believe it wouldn't be a stretch for Fox and the like associated with HBO for Apple's TV programming. (yes, I read the article and this is a bit off topic but relates to the previous front page post re:CBS and the Siri TV rumors)

I can only imagine what this is going to cost if HBO is truly on board. HBO has steadfastly refused to work with services like Netflix until they double or triple the current monthly fee.
Wow! That's insane!

(Funny, someone went along and gave a negative to all the posts already, being a good MacRumors citizen I countered it lol ;) )
 
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bbeagle

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Oct 19, 2010
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I can only imagine what this is going to cost if HBO is truly on board. HBO has steadfastly refused to work with services like Netflix until they double or triple the current monthly fee.
HBO's service already is ala carte.

HBO doesn't have anything to lose by going to Apple TV, and still charging the same $12/month fee they charge cable subscribers.

If HBO then Cinemax then Movie Channel then Starz, etc. get on-board with Apple TV, this can be the start of the ala carte system.
 

Diode

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Apr 15, 2004
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If it works anything like Match for Music - I think they get paid by Apple every time they are streamed from the Cloud.

Seems like they would want this revenue. Hopefully this paves the way to allowing Match for Movies and recognizing content not purchased from iTunes.
 

ck2875

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Mar 25, 2009
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I can only imagine what this is going to cost if HBO is truly on board. HBO has steadfastly refused to work with services like Netflix until they double or triple the current monthly fee.
Did you read the article or just speculate what information it contained and opt to blindly post a comment?

This isn't about adding in HBO content to iTunes the day after it airs on HBO's channels. It is simply HBO allowing you to redownload films you've already purchased before their exclusive window goes into effect. In fact, it really has nothing to do with accessing HBO's first party IP.
 

whooleytoo

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Aug 2, 2002
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I can only imagine what this is going to cost if HBO is truly on board. HBO has steadfastly refused to work with services like Netflix until they double or triple the current monthly fee.
I'm not too surprised - I'm amazed Netflix is so cheap. Yes, my cable package offers a lot more - and newer - content, but at 10+ times the monthly cost.

I'd have absolutely no problem paying 3-4 times more for Netflix if they boosted their available content; because that means I could drop cable.
 

Gasu E.

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Mar 20, 2004
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Did you read the article or just speculate what information it contained and opt to blindly post a comment?

This isn't about adding in HBO content to iTunes the day after it airs on HBO's channels. It is simply HBO allowing you to redownload films you've already purchased before their exclusive window goes into effect. In fact, it really has nothing to do with accessing HBO's first party IP.
I up-voted you for being the only person who read this announcement right. -100 to anyone who thinks this is about streaming HBO content.

This is basically about HBO not letting a contractual technicality stand in the way of something that doesn't impact their business. Kudos to HBO for not being a bunch of d1##heads; other than that it is nothing amazing.
 

iphone1105

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Oct 8, 2009
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I didn't even know that HBO made 100's of millions of dollars a year. @ ≈$10 a month, they have a lot more subscribers than I thought.
They have so many shows and rights to DVD's and films of them, Sexy and The City holds some of the top spots for DVD Sales all time, and that show is reaired today still gaining more money based on the fact my girlfriend always has it on in the bedroom, same for sopranos, hugely popular on dvd, reaired on a&e here in the US. They make money hand over first with their reair right to all their shows, The Wire, Boardwalk Empire, etc....
 

chris566

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Oct 11, 2010
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I dont know this means. I'm new to Apple TV. Would this apply to iTunes Match since I own DVDs and Blu Ray of hbo content?
 

Cougarcat

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Sep 19, 2003
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HBO's service already is ala carte.

HBO doesn't have anything to lose by going to Apple TV, and still charging the same $12/month fee they charge cable subscribers.

If HBO then Cinemax then Movie Channel then Starz, etc. get on-board with Apple TV, this can be the start of the ala carte system.
Actually, they do have something to loose. Cable companies pay them gobs of money for exclusivity. Until they believe they can make more money selling streaming subscriptions, it won't happen.
 

BC2009

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Jul 1, 2009
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I dont know this means. I'm new to Apple TV. Would this apply to iTunes Match since I own DVDs and Blu Ray of hbo content?
No... This allows you to re-download movies you purchased on iTunes so you don't have to sync them to your iPhone or iPad before you leave on a trip or use iTunes running on your PC to stream the movie to your Apple TV.

If you look at "Movies in the Cloud" service (found under "Purchased" on Apple TV and iTunes Store) some movies can be re-downloadded (new feature since March 7, 2012), but other movies in your iTunes collection do not appear. The missing ones are likely from those studios who are blocked by their agreement with HBO.

The feature you are asking for would be awesome (iTunes Match for DVD and Blu-Ray movies), but I don't think we will see that until we see Apple's supposedly "revolutionary new television". Incidentally, I think the movie industry is working on what looks to be an ill-fated project called "Ultra-Violet" for essentially converting your DVD/Blu-Ray collection into a streaming collection. If you're like me, you want streaming and re-download for convenience but you also want your movies on your own hard drive where you personally can guarantee access to them.

UPDATE: According to the UltraViolet FAQ, UV allows for both "download" and "streaming". So this may be a good thing if it ever takes off since it will allow playing of your movies on any device.
 
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smaffei

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Jun 5, 2003
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[Steve Jobs was] brave enough to think differently, bold enough to believe he could change the world, and talented enough to do it. -Barack Obama
And, if you read Issacson's book, Steve Jobs was very frustrated by Obama. Every economic solution Jobs proposed was rebuffed by Obama because of "political ramifications." Everything was an "...I can't do that." reply.
 

charlituna

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Diode said:
If it works anything like Match for Music - I think they get paid by Apple every time they are streamed from the Cloud.

Seems like they would want this revenue. Hopefully this paves the way to allowing Match for Movies and recognizing content not purchased from iTunes.
Once again, this is NOT Match. It is only things you already purchased from iTunes. Not your DVD rips, torrented stuff etc
 

Cory Bauer

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Jun 26, 2003
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I'm not too surprised - I'm amazed Netflix is so cheap. Yes, my cable package offers a lot more - and newer - content, but at 10+ times the monthly cost.
Streaming is cheap when the content library is riddled with **** no other content provider was willing to pay for.
 

appleguy123

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Apr 1, 2009
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And, if you read Issacson's book, Steve Jobs was very frustrated by Obama. Every economic solution Jobs proposed was rebuffed by Obama because of "political ramifications." Everything was an "...I can't do that." reply.
I still like the quote. And Steve liked Obama, he was even going to help make ads for his campaign(also in the book).
 

daxomni

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Jun 24, 2009
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Did you read the article or just speculate what information it contained and opt to blindly post a comment?
I read the CNET "article" but there was almost nothing there. I didn't click on the WSJ article because most of them are behind a pay wall. Apparently this one isn't. That doesn't change the primary point however. Namely, that HBO has something Apple and the studios want, and that HBO has been extremely shrewd in their online content dealings in the past. I have no reason to believe HBO will be any different this time around. All of which leaves me wondering what exactly HBO is expecting in return for relaxing these restrictions, what it will "cost" the studios (and/or Apple) to make these changes, and where that "lost" revenue is expected to come from. The fact that HBO did not create the content that is being discussed doesn't change the fact that they still own a year's worth of online distribution rights.
 

scoobydoo99

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Mar 11, 2003
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...I would believe it wouldn't be a stretch for Fox and the like associated with HBO (who already offers a la carte) ...
HBO's service already is ala carte.
Wow. That's great! I had no idea that HBO offered a la carte pricing!! How much is Game of Thrones? True Blood? Perhaps I can get those for around $0.50-0.75 per month each! That'll be great! :rolleyes:

Of course, HBO does NOT offer "a la carte" pricing. Cable companies offer "premium channels" a la carte. That is, you can purchase ALL the programming on HBO or Cinemax or Showtime individually as a channel. The phrase "a la carte" pricing in reference to a supposed new television content delivery model refers to the ability to purchase OTHER channels (e.g. CNN or SyFy or Animal Planet) individually. Some people talk about a la carte pricing of individual series (a la iTunes "Season Pass") But, in either case, you can't say that HBO offers a la carte service - they are offered by cable companies as an a la carte channel, and they DO NOT offer a la carte pricing themselves.
 

iCarabma

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Feb 22, 2012
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This is HBO graciously agreeing to loosen terms of a contract that were having an unforeseen effect.

By doing so HBO shows goodwill to two important partners (the studios and Apple) without threatening their business model.

Good on HBO.