Shows from channels including HBO, Showtime and Starz could soon be available on Apple TV via a “premium TV bundle.” This would mean that instead of paying for the channels separately, viewers could pay a price for a single paid package much like other conventional television operators.
Unlike certain paid TV subscriptions, however, viewers would not be required to pay for a basic range of channels before the premium one is released and instead Apple would provide an upfront standalone option for every customer. At present, Apple offers HBO for $15 a month, Showtime for $11 a month and Starz for $9 a month but no prices have yet been put forward for the bundle package. According to industry sources, though, Apple is yet to formalize this deal with any network.
This is something that has been in the pipeline for Apple for a number of years, despite their rivals Hulu and Google announcing their own plans for something similar, and it is not the first time that the company have attempted it. In 2015, Apple’s plans to bundle together several popular live channels and on-demand television for $30 was scrapped after they were unable to get the necessary permission from content providers who feared bundling their channels. Assertive negotiation tactics from company executives was another thing that Apple were criticized for.
Despite this, Apple are still rumored to be creating a business centered around creating original, scripted television, in the same vein as Netflix and Amazon, for launch later this year. The company have also detailed plans for the launch of a number of new reality TV shows that will be available exclusively on Apple Music.