Gene Munster: Why Apple put iTunes on Samsung TVs

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From the Apple analyst who held out longest to the dream of an Apple-branded television.


Posted to Loup Ventures subscribers Monday: “iTunes Integration With Samsung Underscores Services Focus.”

Apple and Samsung announced a partnership that will bring iTunes Movies and TV Shows, as well as Apple AirPlay 2 support to Samsung Smart TVs beginning this spring. iTunes users will be able to access their existing library and buy or rent from the iTunes Store. AirPlay 2 also allows users to play videos, music, and photos on their television. This news is noteworthy given it’s the first iTunes integration with a third party display manufacturer. Two takeaways:

This is further evidence that Apple is willing to change its hardware-first approach and work with third parties to boost Services revenue. Instead of creating software to make its hardware more appealing, as has been the status quo, Apple is now permitting its software services on competing hardware. Other recent examples of this include Apple Music on the Google Play store, announced in Nov. 2015, and the Amazon Echo’s support of Apple Music announced in Dec. 2018.

Apple continues to shy away from launching an Apple-branded television. While investors are not expecting Apple to launch its own television, the Samsung arrangement further suggests that there is little chance the company launches its own TV in the next several years.

My take: I wonder who paid whom?