Google is talking to media companies about licensing live TV programming and streaming it on the internet, the WSJ reported Tuesday afternoon, citing unidentified sources.
The article doesn’t say how far the discussions have gotten or which networks Google is talking with, but “in at least one case, Google has provided a demonstration of the product.”
Google already has Google TV, a product that provides access to apps like Pandora and Redbox Instant and is powering certain smart TVs as well as a separate set-top boxes. But Google TV is largely meant to be complementary to an existing pay TV subscription, whereas this new offering would compete directly with subscriptions offered by cable and satellite TV companies.
Other companies also want to compete with cable providers and transmit TV over the internet. Intel plans to launch its own service, OnCue, this year. Sony, Apple and Fanhattan are also working on such services, but have had difficulty getting them off the ground. Apple, for instance, has pursued a piecemeal strategy to get networks to stream their content through apps on Apple TV, but is also reportedly working on a live TV product that would allow ad-skipping.