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WSJ: Apple, Comcast in talks about TV-streaming service

  • Apple (AAPL) and Comcast (CMCSA) are in discussions about a service that would enable users to stream live and/or on-demand TV, and digital-video recordings stored in the cloud, the WSJ reports.
  • The service would use an Apple set-top box and get special treatment over the "last mile" on Comcast's network so that downloads would be faster. The latter would have to make significant investments to provide the level of service that Apple is seeking.
  • News of the talks follow a report that Apple is in negotiations with record labels about launching a Spotify-like music streaming subscription service.
Comments (11)
  • MJ Pragmatist
    , contributor
    Comments (103) | Send Message
     
    Nice to hear of Apple doing something new that is near term tangible.
    24 Mar, 07:39 AM Reply Like
  • SP5524
    , contributor
    Comments (83) | Send Message
     
    Opposed to Google working on elevators that go to space?
    24 Mar, 09:09 AM Reply Like
  • Rollo Tomasi
    , contributor
    Comments (213) | Send Message
     
    This would easily make me cancel my direct TV and run comcast internet with Apple/Comcast TV.
    24 Mar, 09:51 AM Reply Like
  • pointguy
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    There is no worse provider than comcast.
    24 Mar, 11:34 AM Reply Like
  • RFH2000
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    Hello Apple... good-bye Dish
    24 Mar, 11:34 AM Reply Like
  • gelstretch
    , contributor
    Comments (804) | Send Message
     
    This is not a canary in the coal mine..... it is a big crow screeching its lungs out. The future has just been revealed, and this is the wave. Today is the day to buy more AAPL as well as CMCSA, as these two companies will dominate the space.
    24 Mar, 12:45 PM Reply Like
  • scott trader
    , contributor
    Comments (4500) | Send Message
     
    Comcast is too expensive as a prescription service.....700 plus cable channels twenty are worth having....I would prefer a pay for ap channel...
    24 Mar, 12:48 PM Reply Like
  • K1smet
    , contributor
    Comments (450) | Send Message
     
    I think Apple's intent is to allow us to chose not to buy everything Comcast offers - most of which is junk. I think it would be an 'on-demand' service not a bundled service. I sure hope that's the case.
    24 Mar, 03:44 PM Reply Like
  • rrose39
    , contributor
    Comments (645) | Send Message
     
    What I don't understand is why are all of those channels controlled by just a few providers like ComCast and Time Warner and Dish?

     

    Why isn't Apple also able to provide a subset of those channels?

     

    Anyone have an explanation for that?
    24 Mar, 01:07 PM Reply Like
  • RST1
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    They control the channels because they are monopolies in the fact that only one cable company is allowed to operate in a geographical area. To encourage companies to invest the money to originally put in the cable and infrastructure governments give cable companies exclusive rights to an area. The government and the property owner (apartments, condos, individuals) also do not want 3 or 4 different companies digging up the landscape burying cables all over the place. The right away where cable is buried is often government land along the roads so the government controls who can bury their cable. That is how they came to be this way. That one cable company in your region has to have carry all the channels because they are a monopoly and have to serve everybody in their area. It is not feasible to filter at the curb just the channels you want to pay for, all the channels are in the cable all the time. The internet may seem to remove this need to have everybody pay for all channels because the tv show is a one-to-one stream directly to you but if the internet is coming over the cable TV line then other problems are created. Comcast or some other monopoly cable operator that owns that cable in the ground will charge you somehow to make the same amount of money, knowing you may drop their TV service. It may come directly from you in terms of higher internet charges, charges by internet usage, or indirectly via payments from Apple. Having Apple, Netflix, and Amazon all buying internet transmission rights from say Comcast is a way of multiplexing over the one cable line but the cost to maintain and upgrade that single cable in the ground will go up because the bandwidth and quality requirements will go up. Telephone companies had hoped to go around cable operators because they had a line in the ground already but a line that had little bandwidth. The cost to lay fiber to every house is very high and that's why it's very localized as to where fiber is. It takes years and years and lots of investment and just when you think you are done you have to go back and upgrade it all because the bandwidth has to be increased.
    24 Mar, 03:18 PM Reply Like
  • LIS1
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    Good summary RST1. People often forget the cost of the infrastructure.
    25 Mar, 02:53 AM Reply Like
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