With rumors flying about an Apple television subscription service in the works for release this year, new details have started to emerge about what kinds of deals the tech company will make with its content partners. The NY Post says that these deals will involve Apple turning over certain data about its users to programmers to help solidify its agreements.
Apple is reportedly giving TV partners a lot of leeway, allowing each network to decide how to handle areas like advertising on the service. However, in order to attract these content producers, Apple is offering up data regarding its viewers, such as who they are, which shows they watch, viewing schedules, and more.
This might seem at odds with Apple’s focus on customer privacy, which has been a major point of contention between the company and the US government, but it just goes to show how far Apple is willing to go to put together this deal. Viewer data was historically gathered indirectly by Nielsen measurements, but more direct tracking of TV consumption is possible through DVRs, as well as set top boxes such as Apple TV. According to the report, “traditional cable companies, Amazon and Netflix have refused to hand over” viewer data to programmers.
Last year rumors swirled that the Cupertino company was working on a similar service with Comcast, though that plan eventually fell through, and the Comcast-owned NBC is reportedly being excluded from the new service, leading it to create its own standalone offering.
Last week Apple announced a new partnership with HBO to bring the network’s HBO Now streaming/VOD service to iOS devices exclusively for six months.