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CBS CEO says the company is no longer in talks with Apple about streaming TV

If you’re anxiously awaiting the launch of Apple’s rumored Internet TV streaming service, be prepared to wait a while longer. CBS CEO Les Moonves said that the company hasn’t had any recent conversations with Apple about streaming, based on a recent interview with CNNMoney.

“We had conversations awhile back, and we haven’t had recent conversations with them,” Moonves said. When asked when Apple might launch a streaming service, the CEO denied any knowledge. “You’ll have to ask Apple that. I don’t know that.”

CBS has been used as something of a barometer to measure any potential movement from Apple regarding streaming in recent months. In December, Moonves was quoted as saying that Apple had put its plans for streaming TV “on hold.”

This came as a surprise at the time, as it had only been October when the CEO said that such a service from the company was likely. “Do I think something will happen? Probably, but I do not know when,” Moonves said on Bloomberg TV at the time.

Just because Apple isn’t in talks with networks doesn’t mean the company has abandoned its plans for streaming, but it may have modified them. Last month rumors surfaced that the company was talking to Hollywood creatives about pursuing licensing deals for original content, similar to what we see from Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu.

Apple’s chief entertainment architect Eddy Cue was said to be leading the talks with Hollywood executives, with iTunes VP Robert Kondrk also involved. This could point to distributing original content via iTunes, but it doesn’t rule out streaming either.

For CBS, lack of forward progress with Apple doesn’t mean the company isn’t pursuing streaming itself. Moonves says streaming is “very important” to the company’s future, as its streaming efforts with the Super Bowl recently showed. The event broke streaming records for the company, pulling in 3.96 million viewers. By contrast, NBC only saw 1.2 million viewers watch via streaming last year.

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