Apple has started talking to TV programmers about creating a digital TV guide, reports Recode. The guide would work on both Apple TV boxes and other devices, like iPhones, allowing users to quickly find their desired TV shows and movies, and play them with a single click.
The new direction is a spinoff of the skinny-bundle TV service the company wanted to launch last year. After several years of failed negotiations with networks and studios, Apple has decided to just build an interface for content, and let everyone else worry about the red tape.
Apple laid out the first part of this plan in public in June, at its WWDC event, when it announced a “single sign-on” plan that’s supposed to let pay TV customers access video programmers’ apps without having to continually provide logins and passwords. If pay TV distributors sign on to the plan, it would let users access and download multiple “TV Everywhere” apps more easily.
Since then, Apple has begun talking to programmers about providing metadata about what’s in their apps so that Apple could build a guide.
Apple already has extensive data about many video programmers’ apps, which it uses for its Siri-powered search function. So it’s not clear whether Apple needs more information to make the guide work, or just wants programmers’ blessing to include them in the guide.
Also keep in mind that Apple is getting very aggressive with original programming, and it already has multiple television shows in the works. One of them, a reality series called “Planet of the Apps,” just put out a casting call, and is expected to start filming sometime this fall.