Those of you who have been anticipating the announcement of Apple’s long-rumored subscription television service should prepare yourselves for disappointment. Although the company was reportedly planning to unveil the service at WWDC 2015 next week, Apple hasn’t been able to secure the content licensing agreements that it needs to be able to stream movies and television shows, which has caused some serious delays with its television service.
Apple won’t be announcing its much-anticipated subscription TV service next week at its Worldwide Developer Conference, according to several people with knowledge of the situation. The Cupertino technology company has told network executives the planned unveiling will be postponed because Apple has yet to finalize the licensing deals. Industry executives predict Apple’s Web TV offering may not launch until later this year, or in 2016. Technology and money issues remain sticking points. Apple wanted to launch a subscription TV service in early fall to coincide with the start of the new broadcast television season. But the debut got bogged down by negotiations over financial terms and new technology that would be required for broadcasters to deliver local programming to Apple’s Web TV service. The company wants to provide customers in cities around the U.S. with programming from their local broadcast stations. That would distinguish Apple’s planned offering from those already available from Sony and Dish’s Sling, which to date have only offered local programming in a handful of cities, or none at all. Broadcasters don’t own all the local TV stations that air network programming, and clearing the rights to show local programs and commercials is a time-consuming process.