Apple is in discussion with the major US TV networks ahead of a launch of its own online TV service this autumn.
The service would offer a mini-bouquet of US TV networks and be available on a variety of devices including the Apple TV boxes.
The Wall Street Journal, quoting people familiar with the matter, described the proposal as a ‘skinny’ offer that would feature the majors, but not the smaller channels. Absent from the talks is NBCUniversal, following a falling out with patent Comcast, over a joint XI-web enabled box.
There is no suggestion that a European service might also be available.
At last week’s Apple Watch event, it was announced that the price of the Apple TV box would be reduced to $69 in the US and £59 in the UK. Since its debut the product has retailed at $99. The lower pricepoint puts the device closer to, though still more expensive than the Roku and Chromecast devices.
Earlier, it was announced that HBO Now would be made available to iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Apple TV users who can purchase HBO Now directly in-app as a standalone service. The exclusivity will run for three months, after which HBO Now will become available on other devices.
In addition to HBO it is already possible to pick up a number of other TV providers on the Apple TV device, which include Netflix, TV4 (Sweden) Sky News, Canal Plus, and just recently ABC News was added for an international audience.
In a related development, US cabler Cablevision has announced it will offer HBO Now to its broadband customers.