Canal+, a French cable provider, has sidelined its own cable box in favor of partnering with Apple to provide its more than 5 million subscribers with the Apple TVs instead, according to French tech news site Next INPact. Now, subscribers to Canal’s cable service will be able to access channels through the over-the-top myCanal app on a leased 4K-capable Apple TV, which will cost €6 per month in addition to any TV package. For those who want to stick with satellite service, they can do so through the traditional Canal cable box.
This isn’t the first time a cable company has decided to eschew the traditional cable box approach in favor of a streaming device. Comcast last year launched a beta to let subscribers use a Roku streaming device or the built-in Roku software of a smart TV as a cable box for full live and on-demand programming, as well as cloud DVR recordings. While Comcast’s service is still just a beta, Canal appears to be letting any one of its subscribers ditch the cable box for the internet-first approach. While Canal doesn’t have a strong presence outside France, this partnership could pave the way for other cable providers around the world to embrace streaming as a content delivery method and third-party set-top boxes as the hardware of choice.