Universal and Fox movies blocked from iCloud on new Apple TV?

As we predicted, Apple quickly unveiled a refreshed Apple TV today at its media event in San Francisco before moving onto the new iPad. On top of 1080p video streaming, perhaps one of the biggest features of the device’s upgraded UI is the ability to access purchased movies stored in iCloud— just like with music and TV shows. Unfortunately, according to a report from AllThingsD, it looks like not all content will be accessible. Content from Comcast’s Universal and News Corp.’s Fox will not be available due to deals currently in place with HBO:
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SCinemax’s Max Go App somehow skirts App Store porn police

If you’ve ever been *ahem* channel surfing late at night and stumbled upon HBO subsidiary Cinemax programming you know that there isn’t much differentiation between what you see there and all out pornography.

The news this weekend is that Apple just gave the go-ahead to Cinemax’s MaxGo App(free) for both iPhone and iPad.  Yes, it includes “Late Night” content.

Far be it from us to judge what should and shouldn’t be on the App Store, but it seems that Apple is continuing to create controversy with its “no porn” stance.

In an email exchange with Gawker’s Ryan Tate last year, Jobs said that the iPad would offer users “freedom from porn.” And in a Q&A session after the launch of iOS 4, Jobs told reporters that porn was one reason Apple wouldn’t allow unsigned or unapproved apps onto iOS devices like the iPhone and iPad.

“You know, there’s a porn store for Android. You can download nothing but porn. You can download porn, your kids can download porn. That’s a place we don’t want to go – so we’re not going to go there.”

Playboy,which is at least as “soft-core” as SCinemax, was denied access to the App Store for its nude pictorials.  For what it is worth, access to the Max Go app is parental controlled to users 17 or older.

If this story picks up, Apple will probably force  HBO to curtail its mature content retroactively, not that there aren’t plenty of other outlets via Safari for such material. Read more

Apple’s “iTunes Replay” service, Netflix-killer unlikely anytime soon

Looks like we’re going to have to keep waiting for an Netflix-killer from Apple… Rumors were floating around last week that claimed Apple was on the verge of launching a new “iTunes Replay” service, which would allow users to re-download and/or stream TV shows and movies. Unfortunately, a new report from CNET claims Apple does not have the agreements in place to offer content from the big film studios via the cloud.

While we all know Apple is working on some type of on-demand service for iTunes content via iCloud, apparently sources have confirmed the company has failed to sign the majority of the six major film studios and “negotiations could drag on for months” before they eventually acquire cloud streaming rights.

There were also rumors that Apple could introduce a video subscription streaming service to rival Netflix and Amazon. However, the report confirms this was probably just speculation, most likely stemming from discussions Apple has had with studios regarding a video-on-demand service in the past.

Why is Apple having trouble signing the studios? Greg Sandoval from CNET claims HBO’s exclusive distribution rights with Warner Bros, 20th Century Fox, and Universal, as well as support for the new UltraViolet streaming service may be preventing Apple from landing deals with the big studios.
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