At least one of Apple’s highly anticipated new products won’t be making an appearance at next week’s WWDC conference. Citing “several people with knowledge of the situation,” Re/code reports that the Cupertino company’s TV subscription service has been delayed after getting “bogged down by negotiations.”
It may now not launch until later this year — or even 2016.
Apple has been working on a major overhaul of its Apple TV service, and plans to offer an array of video content for subscribers. One key part of this will be local television stations to differentiate from other products already on the market — but this is causing issues. According to Re/code, it’s because “broadcasters don’t own all the local TV stations that air network programming… clearing the rights to show local programs and commercials is a time-consuming process.”
The service is expected to be cross-platform — allowing customers to watch video on their iPads, iPhones and Macs, as well as on a dedicated Apple TV streaming box.
There had previously been rumours that the device could be delayed due to negotiations over rights. When it does launch, it will cost around $US30 to $US40 per month, according to a March 2015 report in the Wall Street Journal. For reference, Dish’s Sling TV service costs $US20 per month.
Apple is also working on a new TV top box which will — among other changes — radically redesign its remote, eschewing buttons in favour of a touch pad. It’s not currently clear whether Apple will go ahead and launch the new hardware next week without the subscription service, though it’s possible.
The tech giant is also expected to unveil its new music streaming service at WWDC, its annual developer conference. It’s expected to be a premium service designed to take on established industry players like Spotify and Tidal, and will feature celebrity-curated playlists and exclusive content.