The Apple Network? June Announcement Targets TV Unbundling

apple-tv-overview-hero-2013_GEO_USApple is rumored to be in the process of developing around a 25-channel network by this fall, according to the Wall Street Journal.

ABC, CBS and Fox are said to be onboard. Due to conflicts with Comcast, owner of NBCUniversal (NBC, USA, Bravo), those programs are not currently expected.

Apple aims to deliver consumers a “skinny” bundle for around $30-$40/mo. compatible across Apple iOS devices (iPhones, iPads) in addition to Apple TV.

During the technology giant’s spring roll-out, Apple revealed an unbundled partnership with HBO at $14.99/mo., said to be just the appetizer for what’s to come.

“Several companies are looking for ways to target ‘cord cutters,’ people who don’t want to pay the typical $90 price for a cable TV package with hundreds of channels and who tend to enjoy online video,” say Keach Hagey, Shalini Ramachandran and Daisuke Wakabayashi of the WSJ.

“In the most recent talks, Apple is continuing to propose creating a live TV streaming service with a vast on-demand library that would be stored in the ‘cloud.’ It may be hard for Apple to get rights to all the programming it is asking for, including full seasons of shows. Many media companies have deals to license such content to outlets like Netflix and Hulu.”

Millennials are dropping linear TV viewing at around 4 percent annually. Nielsen notes the drop from September and January was 10.6 percent, the largest ever. About a quarter of 18-to-34-year-olds watch linear TV, while 44 percent of baby boomers do. Linear viewing for all ages in the U.S. peaked in 2013, according to AdAge.

The Dish Network and Sony Corp. are also aiming at competitive streaming TV products.

The momentum offers a fresh take at Apple TV, a product that has stagnated and been riddled with bugs since its roll-out in 2007. Currently the hardware retails for $69.00.

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Eric T. Parker oversees operations and contributes editorial for MusicRow's print magazine, MusicRow.com, the RowFax tip sheet and the MusicRow CountryBreakout chart. He also facilitates annual events for the enterprise, including MusicRow Awards, CountryBreakout Awards and the Rising Women on the Row. [email protected] | @EricTParker

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