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Apple to launch TV streaming service this year

Apple is allegedly planning a service to rival conventional cable subscriptions, featuring live internet streaming of 25 channels.

It looks as though Apple’s recent partnership with HBO was just the beginning of its TV-related plans for 2015.

The death of cable?

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple has a lot of big names on board for the project including Fox, ABC and CBS. It also has an agreement in place with ESPN, which is a big deal for sports fans. One channel notable for its absence is NBC – likely due to the fact that its parent company Comcast had reportedly been working with Apple awhile back, but that over the past year reports have suggested that any relationship has since broken down.

The service is rumored to cost somewhere between $30 to $40 per month. This could put it in the running as a viable alternative to cable subscriptions, which are already seeing competition from on-demand services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime. It will be available from Fall this year exclusively on Apple devices – most notably the Apple TV.

Apple TV upgrade looming?

On that note, the Apple TV set-top box is long overdue a revision. The third generation device has been around since early 2012 and recently received a big price drop to just $69, which would seem to pave the way for a proper upgrade some time soon. It could also encourage higher adoption once the subscription service is launched.

A fourth generation Apple TV could see a move into even higher definitions like 4K, or could add any number of features already popularized on other Apple devices: imagine the possibilities of Siri and HomeKit on your TV, or even the entire App Store. Is big-screen gaming using an iPhone or iPad to wirelessly control the action too much to expect?

It seems obvious that Apple wants to extend its reach further into the world of TV and help shape the way we consume content in future. Whether that’s best achieved through its upcoming streaming service or a new piece of hardware, or both, remains to be seen.