In a necessary business growth move, Apple has announced iTunes will now work on Samsung televisions, a rarity for a company that prides itself on the exclusivity of its software.
This means that all TV shows and films bought through iTunes will be available to owners of Samsung smart Television.
Apple had initially been pushing the sales of its £179 Apple TV box as the preferred way to watch materials purchased from the iTunes Store.
However, the presence of cheaper alternatives from Amazon and Google and other televisions with streaming capabilities built-in affected badly the market acceptance it got.
The company is also gearing up for a big push into TV, having signed big names such as Oprah Winfrey and commissioned shows including an adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series, although its full plans for the launch are unclear.
Apple’s services business, which includes iTunes as well as the App Store and Apple Music, is becoming vitally important to its growth as sales of the iPhone decline.
Last year, it made its Apple Music streaming service available to Amazon’s Echo speakers, despite the company selling its own smart speaker. It has also made Apple Music available on Android phones.
Apple famously made iTunes available for Windows computers in 2003, sacrificing an advantage held by its Mac computers in order to sell more iPods. Described by Steve Jobs as ‘hell freezing over’, It was seen as a masterstroke, boosting sales of the iPod which became Apple’s most important business before the iPhone.
Eddy Cue, the head of Apple’s software and services division, said the move would give iPhone, iPad and Mac users ‘yet another way to enjoy all their favorite content on the biggest screen in their home’.
Samsung said iTunes would come to last year’s TV models through a software update, and be installed on this year’s models.