For more than a year, Apple has been seeking rights from cable companies and television networks for a service that would allow users to watch live and on-demand television over an Apple set-top box or TV.
Talks have been slow and proceeding in fits and starts, but things seem to be heating up.
In recent discussions, Apple told media executives it wants to offer a “premium” version of the service that would allow users to skip ads and would compensate television networks for the lost revenue, according to people briefed on the conversations.
A successful negotiation would be a major win for Apple. No doubt people will complain about the extra cost to enable ad skipping, but it will be worth the price for some. But it does introduce the inevitable question of just how many people are willing to pay a little extra for commercial-free viewing.
Also, notice that this is a software feature. Once again, this points to Apple continuing to produce a box, not their own television hardware.