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Apple might be quietly preparing an assault on the cable box via its Apple TV

Jared Newman | June 28, 2016
The next version of Apple’s tvOS makes watching cable channels easier. Why not cut out the middleman?

Still, tvOS already goes a long way toward rethinking how we navigate traditional TV channels. If Apple is able to secure streaming rights to these channels, it won't need to reinvent the wheel.

The real future of TV

None of this is to suggest that an Apple streaming service is imminent. Last we heard, Apple had gotten frustrated with the deal-making process, especially for local broadcasts that require agreements with individual affiliate stations.

I'll also acknowledge that a bundle focused on TV Everywhere apps might not be a complete solution for everyone. Today, the apps from major broadcast networks (such as ABC and Fox) don't offer live local feeds, which means no local news and no football on Sundays. Some networks don't offer TV Everywhere apps at all.

But Apple may not need to offer its own streaming service to succeed in making Apple TV into the hub of your living room. Instead, Apple may be preparing for a future in which TV operators relinquish control of the set-top box, and start to offer more flexible streaming-only packages for devices like Apple TV. Time Warner Cable and Charter are already experimenting with cable-box-free plans, and Comcast recently announced a plan to bring full channel access to smart TVs and streaming boxes.

In this scenario, you might use the full-blown Comcast or Charter app to access certain channels or shows. But over time, the Apple TV's app-based approach would take over, thanks to powerful features like Siri search that make navigation easier. The number of TV Everywhere apps would grow, and eventually you'd no longer miss the cable guide or the clunky remote controls of your youth. Instead of playing second fiddle to the cable box, Apple TV would become the main attraction.

Source: Macworld US  

 

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