Apple’s Negotiations for its Purposed TV Service May Have Hurt More Than Helped

Eddy Cue Hollywood Reporter

A long-standing rumor suggested Apple was busy developing its own packaged TV service, which would allow customers to pick and choose their content, and pay a minimal amount every month to watch the channels they want.

According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, some more details have come to light, most of which consist around Apple’s hard-line negotiation tactics, which may have hurt the company’s plans more than helped. The report states that Apple’s offers to networks, including the one its closest to, Disney, were staggeringly low, and “alienated” those companies during talks. The report indicates that Apple wanted to lock-in viewer rates, something that networks have not traditionally operated by.

It hasn’t been a well-kept secret that the charge for the TV service was being led by Apple’s Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services. Apparently Disney was excited to get on board with the streaming option, but when the terms were lobbied, the company lost interest. Bob Iger, Disney’s CEO, sits on Apple’s board, and the two companies have always been pretty close, so Disney’s lack of excitement or interest is probably the biggest checkmark against Apple’s plans.

Moreover, other networks weren’t fond of the negotiations or options presented by Apple, as the report shows that talks with companies like 21st Century Fox and CBS simply failed to gain ground. The report makes it apparent that the networks in these talks aren’t under any kind of pressure to work with Apple, or its demands:

“We’re challenged in a lot of ways, but we’re not waiting for this white knight to come racing in the way music was,” one senior TV executive says.”

Reports on Apple’s purposed bundled TV service have gone back-and-forth for quite some time, with expectations it would be unveiled during WWDC 2015 — which didn’t turn out to be the case, with Apple instead announcing a brand new Apple TV fourth-generation later in the year, along with tvOS — a platform that brought an App Store to the set-top box.

Apple eventually was reported to have suspended plans to launch the service, as companies refused to jump on board with Apple’s $30 per month package options for streaming live and on-demand content.

[via The Wall Street Journal]