Apple Inc. is reportedly looking to start selling premium TV bundle, which includes Showtime, HBO, and Starz. Although no deal is yet in place, Cupertino is said to have approached networks about the idea. A bundle could theoretically be revealed alongside the company’s fifth-gen streaming TV box.
Cupertino already offers subscriptions to each of the entertainment channels, but apparently it seeks to bundle them as part of a wider effort to become a cable TV rival. Traditional payTV operators usually require users to subscribe to a basic level of TV channel before it will offer them a premium bundle. The maker of iPhones and iPads could offer the bundle as an independent product, delivered through its iOS device and Apple TV set-top box.
Fortune notes that over the last couple of years, reports have suggested that the iPhone maker has held discussions with TV networks about the possibility of building a TV streaming service for its Apple TV set-top box. The gadget giant has also been rumored to have considered media industry acquisitions but the tech firm announced in 2016 that it has planned to merge with AT&T.
The Cupertino tech giant has announced that it has stopped trying to sell a traditional bundle of pay television channels over the Web. AT&T, Sony, and Dish all sell internet TV packages, and Hulu and Google have announced plans to sell their own.
Apple is reportedly holding discussions with Time Warner’s HBO to sell access to their services in a single bundle. Recode notes that the company does not have a bundle deal in place with any of the premium networks. It currently sells Showtime for $11 a month, HBO for $15 a month, and Starz for $9 a month.
Apple’s media boss Eddy Cue has said that conventional television networks are not willing to make the concessions he is looking to make to sell a TV package. The main question that remains is what would be the price and the percentage of revenue the networks would want.
Engadget notes that it is not certain whether or not people would get a discount over the $35 per month costs. None of the involved firms has commented so far. While it is easier to negotiate with a smaller number of providers, the entertainment firms are already embracing the internet-only television.
Apple is trying to sign on premium TV to offer television services to its customers. The company could deliver a bundle as a platform exclusive, available through its streaming box and iOS. Starz, Showtime, and HBO all sell subscriptions through their mobile apps, at cost of $8.99, $10.99, and $14.99. The bundle is expected to come at a discounted price however, no details on pricing has emerged.
By Anila Maring
Photo Courtesy Apple