LAS VEGAS-Apple has for years carefully maintained a walled garden for its streaming video features and services. So far, iTunes has really only been available through the Apple TV, and bringing it exclusively to Samsung's Smart TVs is kind of a surprising move from Cupertino.
They spent years locked in a costly legal battle over patents after Apple claimed Samsung had copied parts of the iPhone design.
Artificial intelligence, ever larger and crisper display televisions, robots and the smart home are all expected to feature heavily among the latest gadgets showcased by companies from around the world.
Apple and Samsung are two technology stalwarts that have traditionally maintained a rivalry over the past number of years, due to their similar target markets and device strategies.
The Apple iTunes and AirPlay 2 support will be available on their 2019 models beginning this Spring (sometime between March to June) while the 2018 models will get it later via a firmware update.
Samsung Smart TVs in 190 countries will also start to support Apple's AirPlay 2 standard, allowing users to share videos, photos, music and podcasts from their Apple devices to their TV.
Samsung has just come out and announced one of my dream TVs: the new 98-inch Q900 QLED TV with a native 8K resolution with Quantum Dot screen technology and AI upscaling.
The timing of Apple's new iTunes app coincides with the impending launch of a new Netflix-style streaming service that has reportedly cost the company over $1 billion to develop. The surprise announcement made today has wider implications to Apple's content service as well as future plans for the Apple TV hardware. "Bringing more content, value and open platform functionality to Samsung TV owners and Apple customers through iTunes and AirPlay is ideal for everyone".
The tie-up with Samsung suggests Apple is willing to try other approaches to reach more eyeballs.