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COMMENT: Samsung Apple TV Deal Whose Customers Are Safe

Apple’s iPhone sales decline, appears to have delivered a significant 2019 change of direction for Apple, with the decision to cuddle up with Samsung to deliver a new content era for the big US Company whose shares are now crashing and burning as consumers turn away from Apple hardware raising more questions than we have answers.

The decision to allow a third party such as Samsung to get access to Apple content is a huge strategy shift for the company and one that heralds a new era for Apple who appear to be desperate to add none Apple consumers into their Eco system.

It could also be a Trojan horse with Apple getting access to tens of millions of potential new none Apple consumers who have used their Samsung TV to log into Apple content especially content Apple has produced themselves.

Instead of building services to feed content to their own devices including the struggling HomePod and Apple TV box, the company is allowing those services to be accessed on competing devices.

Fundamentally, this all makes sense, since Apple is increasingly focused on services revenue, and it’s been making huge investments in TV content ahead of a long-planned streaming service launch.

For Samsung there is the real risk that consumers who download the Apple app or log in to their Samsung TV to get content Apple content are suddenly exposed to Apple and other Apple products.

Apple TV has to work because 62% of Apple revenues comes from iPhones and sales of these devices are falling.

Apple needs scale to succeed, and that means putting apps on platforms other than the Apple TV that is already lagging in sales compared to much cheaper rivals and it’s not like they’ll sell more when the entire market of Samsung TV owners doesn’t need one anymore.

The Verge has raised other questions about the deal, they have questioned whether Apple going to allow Samsung’s smart TV tracking to snoop on iTunes viewers?

Smart TVs are notorious for tracking what people watch, but Apple’s entire brand is about privacy and you only have to look at a giant Apple privacy or security billboard that has suddenly appeared on the Las Vegas strip to realise that Apple could be exposed.

Apple claims that Samsung will not be able to track usage inside the iTunes Movies & TV Shows app however the Samsung press release claims that iTunes will work with Samsung’s Bixby assistant, search, and guide features.

There are also questions as to whether Apple is building a Tizen iTunes app?

Is there a Tizen team inside Apple? Or is Samsung building this app? Who will be in charge of updating it and fixing bugs?

Apple made a lot of noise about supporting the Dolby Vision HDR standard when it launched the Apple TV 4K, with a fall back to the less-good HDR10.

But Samsung TVs don’t support Dolby Vision — Samsung is pushing HDR10+, which no streaming service apart from Amazon supports.

This announcement raises more questions than answers, so tonight’s Samsung TV press briefing should be very interesting.

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