Sony has locked in an important device ecosystem for its PlayStation Vue virtual pay-TV service, signing an integration deal with Apple TV.
The term “integration” is used loosely here—the IP-based Vue service is now playable on the Apple over-the-top device, and users will be able to access the Siri voice remote to control the Vue app. New customers will not be able to sign up for Vue using Apple TV, however.
This could change, with Bloomberg reporting this week that Apple has reduced the fee structure for integration of video services like Vue into the Apple TV app from 30 percent to 15 percent.
“Starting today, PlayStation Vue will be supported on Apple TV (4th generation), leveraging Apple TV’s latest hardware to create an innovative experience,” said Dan Myers, head of product for Sony PlayStation Vue, in a company blog post. “You will be able to take advantage of Apple TV’s Siri Remote and easy navigation with touch, while enjoying PlayStation Vue’s sleek look and feel.”
With the inclusion of Apple TV, Sony now has most of the major living-room OTT ecosystems locked up for Vue—a list that includes Roku players, Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. Sony PlayStation 2 and 3 consoles are, of course, included on that list, but rival gaming devices Xbox and Xbox One are notably—and not so inexplicably—missing.
Along with fellow market incumbent Sling TV from Dish Network, Vue is girding for what will be a far more competitive market for IP-based skinny bundled pay-TV packages, with AT&T’s DirecTV Now slated to debut in the coming two weeks and Hulu and YouTube also prepping new services for next year.
Sony has not released any user metrics for Vue. In June, it was reported that the service had surpassed 100,000 users.