Apple TV Channels
Apple TV Channels is a service of Apple Inc. that aggregates content from popular over the top video on demand a la carte subscription services. First revealed in March 2019, it is designed to simplify the process of subscribing to and viewing that content by making those services purchasable and accessible in one video content hub, so the consumer need not use each service's own sign-up mechanism or view the content through each service's own app or website. The payment method can also be centralized through Apple's own billing service.
Because the content is from paid subscription services, it will be ad-free. Content can also be downloaded to the device for offline viewing, and there is an option to share accounts within families.
It can be accessed through Apple's Apple TV app, which is available for the Apple TV microconsole and iOS devices, and is slated for 2019 offering on Mac computers, numerous smart television models, Roku devices, and Amazon Fire TV devices.
Apple TV Channels, along with the simultaneously announced Apple TV+ over-the-top ad-free subscription web television service, is part of the company's concerted effort to expand its service revenues by making recurring monthly charge distributed video content available widely to the public.
Major partners announced include Showtime, HBO, Epix, and CBS All Access. The broad reach of the 1.4 billion Apple devices in use globally, including 900 million iPhones, induced major services, some of which already have their own content distribution systems, to make deals with Apple.
Netflix declined to be involved with the service, with Netflix CEO Reed Hastings saying that Netflix chose not to integrate its service's programming into Apple TV Channels because "we prefer to have our customers watch our content in our service." Viewers might be unaware that the content they were viewing was created or distributed by Netflix, and Netflix would have received little or no data about persons viewing and subscribing to Netflix via Apple TV Channels.
The CEO of AT&T, Randall Stephenson, during an on-stage discussion with CNBC's Andrew Ross Sorkin at a fintech event, pushed back on the suggestion that content providers, like AT&T's HBO – which currently supports tvOS and iOS via HBO Go and HBO Now, that make their video available through Apple TV Channels would "not have the same level of access to the data", to "see what everybody's really watching and be able to make certain decisions", by insisting that AT&T's digital distribution deals provide it "access to data ... critical to advertising delivery, [ ] critical to marketing".
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- Apple TV app at apple.com