The new version of the Apple TV video console is expected to boast ultra-high definition screening capabilities — but it may not have many films to screen.
Apple is bickering with Hollywood studios over pricing ultra-high definition — also known as 4K — films for streaming on the new Apple TV, according to a Tuesday report.
And the clock is ticking.
The Cupertino, Calif.-based tech behemoth is expected to announce its new suite of products on Sept. 12. In addition to the new Apple TV — a box that acts as a media player and which doesn’t include a monitor — analysts expect an updated iPhone and Apple Watch.
Apple wants to charge $19.99 for the films on the new 4K version of the Apple TV, in line with what it charges for HD movies, but Hollywood is demanding $5 to $10 more, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing sources.
The studios also appear to want Apple to stay in its lane when it comes to talking price on their turf. Apple believes lower prices will bring in more viewers but the studios want to protect their margins, the Journal reported.
“I wouldn’t tell Apple how to price their iPads,” one studio exec told the paper.
While Apple has been able to disrupt many industries — the iPod and iTunes revolutionized the music industry in 2001, for example — Apple may have a hard time winning against Tinseltown.
While iPhones and MacBooks have become ubiquitous, Apple TV has been losing market share to lower-cost streaming-media players from Amazon and others.
One in three US households has a streaming media player, according to market research firm Parks Associates. Roku has roughly a third of the market, while Apple’s cut of less than 15 percent is shrinking, the firm says.
“Higher-priced devices, such as the Apple TV, have not been able to keep up with low-priced and readily available Roku devices, which can be found at Walmart for as low as $29.99,” Glenn Hower, senior analyst at Parks, said in a report last week.