Apple’s subscription TV service reportedly put on hold, says CBS chief

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By Larry Banks

Many Apple TV owners have been clamouring for an Apple “over the top” TV service to watch on-demand content, but may have to wait long into next year, as the company has apparently put its plans on hold for its Internet TV streaming service, according to CBR chief Les Moonves.

Apple TV over-the-top service on hold

Moonves let slip the news at a Business Insider Ignition conference in New York on Tuesday this week, saying that he believes Apple is putting the service on the back burner for now.

“They’ve had conversations on it and I think they pressed the hold button”, said Moonves. “They were looking for a service”.

Rumours of the Apple TV subscription service started as long ago as 2013, when rumours said the company was bypassing cable companies to negotiate directly with the content providers. At that time, it was thought that a subscription based product would also be revealed with the latest Apple TV.

Unlike the monthly packages available from many cable companies, Apple may be planning a “skinny” bundle of channels with live and on-demand TV from some of the major networks and some cable channels. Estimates for the subscription cost range wildly from between $10 and $40 per month.

Apple already launched it’s fourth generation set-top-box in October this year, as well as the new tvOS operating system and its own App Store. However the rumoured over-the-top streaming service was missing. Moonves however says he thinks “skinny” bundles are the future of TV.

“This will happen”, said Moonves. “It has four major networks and 10 cable networks, let’s say, and the price point will be in the $30s, $30 to $35, $40 maybe. People will not be spending money on channels they don’t want to watch”.

The whole concept is a popular one with so-called cord cutters, but the cable are resistant as they’re keen on their existing revenue structures. With Apple holding off on negotiations for now, the whole concept may be pushed out by months – possibly even beyond the long-rumoured 2016 launch date.

SOURCE: Bloomberg.

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