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SECTIONS / TVS & LARGE DISPLAY

Apple Building Out New Content Network, Key To TV Strategy

By David Richards | Tuesday | 04/02/2014

As Foxtel struggle to hold onto subscribers it's been revealed that Apple is building out a large scale 4K streaming network that will be capable of delivering TV programs to an Apple TV as well as movies music and education and documentary content to schools.

As Foxtel struggle to hold onto subscribers it's been revealed that Apple is building out a large scale 4K streaming network that will be capable of delivering TV programs to an Apple TV as well as movies music and education and documentary content to schools.

Sources in Europe have told me that Apple management believe that the key to their TV strategy is content and that the Company is looking to deliver several new devices that are capable of delivering unique content to both consumers, and education networks.

The Wall Street Journal claims that Apple who since the creation of their content network have relied on third-party content delivery networks (CDNs) such as Akamai and Level3 to ensure reliable streaming of its media content, is now building out its own content delivery network so that users get high level content over an Apple owned network as opposed to third party networks.

An Apple source in Italy told me that senior Apple management in the USA believe that they can gain an edge over Samsung Sony and LG in the TV market by delivering "smart display devices" that have access to a vast library of Apple content. I have also been told that Apple is researching the development of their own content with third party production Companies similar to what Netflix is currently doing in the USA and Europe.

The new content network could be part of a larger plan to expand existing Apple TV services to accommodate TV over IP.

Other sources have told the Wall Street Journal that Apple has "intense interest" in expanding existing television infrastructure and the overall experience for consumers and education departments looking to use content to educate students.

 

Apple's iCloud service and having more control over its own delivery, and Apple TV services could also be behind the in-house CDN build-up.

 

Apple has also made recent hires in the area of television and cable growth. Thus far, it has hired Lauren Provo (formerly part of Comcast's Internet division) and Jean-Fran?ois Mul?, for VP of technology development at CableLabs. Mul? is now an "engineering director" at Apple.

 

Experts in CDN management say that Apple is signing long-term deals for bandwidth and networking expertise, with one authority quoted by the Journal saying that Apple has bought enough bandwidth from web carriers to stream "hundreds of gigabits of data per second" -- far more than it presently has need of.

 

In Australia Apple recently held talks with Telstra and Optus as well as some third party broadband providers according to a former Apple executive.

 

The problem for Telstra is that Apple is a major competitor to the carrier due to their 50% shareholding in Foxtel and the expansion of the Telstra T Box network.

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