Seemingly out of nowhere, Samsung and Apple have announced a new partnership that will see the former bring the latter’s iTunes movies and TV shows to its array of smart TVs. Samsung’s 2018 and 2019 TV models will be gaining the capability in over 100 countries, according to the company. In addition, AirPlay 2 will be added that will allow iOS users to cast contnet to their screen, similar to Google Cast.
To say this announcement is surprising is a bit of an understatement. It isn’t a normality for Apple to grant third-party companies access to their services. Then again, right before the end of the year, Apple published an Amazon Alexa Skill that added support for Apple Music on Echo devices.
The way to look at this announcement is to assume Apple has something cooking on the stove. We’ve heard rumors and reports in the past about Apple potentially launching a streaming service in the very near future, and that’s obvious thanks to announcements of new content partnerships with major studios, actors, and writers. By giving Samsung smart TV users access to their content, Apple will have a much larger platform to launch their streaming service upon. Otherwise, it would mean yet another walled garden service proudly provided by Cupertino themselves
“We look forward to bringing the iTunes and AirPlay 2 experience to even more customers around the world through Samsung Smart TVs, so iPhone, iPad and Mac users have yet another way to enjoy all their favorite content on the biggest screen in their home,” said Eddy Cue, senior vice president of Internet Software and Services at Apple.
“We pride ourselves on working with top industry leaders to deliver the widest range of content services to our Smart TV platform,” said Won-Jin Lee, Executive Vice President, Service Business of Visual Display at Samsung Electronics. “Bringing more content, value and open platform functionality to Samsung TV owners and Apple customers through iTunes and AirPlay is ideal for everyone.”
A firmware update adding support for iTunes content and AirPlay 2 will roll out this spring, according to Samsung.