Tuesday, March 19, 2013

ABC Television is planning on releasing a mobile app for iOS

Soon, you might be able to watch Hell's Kitchen from your Apple iPhone while dining at a restaurant. Or view Shark Tank on an Apple iPad while waiting on line at the bank. A report in the New York Times on Tuesday cites anonymous sources who say that ABC Television is planning on releasing a mobile app for iOS sometime this year that will offer live-streaming programming to Apple iPhone  and Apple iPad users who can verify that they are current customers of a cable or satellite television service.  This subscription-only service, called Television Everywhere, keeps the current business model in place while customers get the live streaming mobile apps that they crave.

Disney, which owns ABC, already offers live streaming sports via its Watch ESPN app and also makes available apps to view full episodes from the Disney Channel on-demand. But doing a live-streaming app for the ABC television network would have some special problems. Contracts with production companies were signed before live-streaming apps existed and ABC local affiliates might not be too happy about seeing network and local programming made available for mobile devices.

ABC first mentioned the possibility of a live-streaming app nine months ago when it announced a deal to bring several Watch Disney apps to Comcast subscribers. Here it is nine months later, and the plan to stream ABC content live over an app is moving at a glacial pace. The service is still expected to hit the Apple App Store before the end of the year.

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