June 19 -- Apple Inc. is adding streaming video applications from Time Warner Inc.'s HBO Go and Walt Disney Co.'s ESPN network to Apple TV.
The HBO app will be accessible to subscribers of the cable channel, Cupertino, California-based Apple said today in a statement. Some ESPN content will require a pay-television subscription, while other video will be available to all iTunes users.
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Adding HBO to the lineup of Apple TV services including Netflix Inc. and Hulu Plus may help the iPhone maker bolster sales of a set-top box that has faced stiff competition from similar video-delivery devices from Roku Inc. and Microsoft Corp. Apple TV would let Time Warner and Disney, which already offer apps for other formats such as Microsoft's Xbox, give another option to consumers who are increasingly shunning broadcasts in favor of on-demand viewing and streaming video over the Internet.
"HBO GO and WatchESPN are some of the most popular iOS apps and are sure to be huge hits on Apple TV," Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet software and services, said in the statement.
ITunes users have downloaded more than 1 billion television episodes and 380 million movies since the service debuted, Apple said, and they're purchasing more than 800,000 shows and 350,000 movies a day.