Apple TV plays catch-up, adds HBO Go and WatchESPN apps

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It took a long time, but the Apple TV has finally added both HBO Go and WatchESPN apps to the streaming box’s content lineup, closing the gap as they’ve been available on iOS for some time.

HBO Go is an extension of the popular channel’s cable and satellite channel with its slew of shows, movies and specials, while WatchESPN can stream live sporting events or on-demand content.

Being extensions of the existing channels, users can only access the content if they are already subscribing to them on cable or satellite.

On top of the iPhone and iPad, HBO Go had already been available on the Roku and Xbox 360 as well. WatchESPN hasn’t had the same level of adoption on set top boxes, but streaming live sports gives it a distinct advantage over services like Netflix and Hulu, which don’t stream live events.

A knock against the Apple TV has been the lack of depth in content sources, though it has offered MLB, NFL and NHL streaming apps, and HBO Go on an iOS device could be streamed over to an Apple TV using AirPlay. The NFL recently signed an agreement with Verizon to stream games live onto mobile devices.

Left in the shadows of the two popular apps, Apple also added the international Sky News, the anime-focused Crunchyroll and Qello, a concert and music documentary app, to its streaming box.

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