Amidst an increasingly certain expectation that Apple will unveil a new Apple TV set-top box at WWDC next month, Rogers, Shaw and Bell have negotiated with the company to bring Shomi and CraveTV, respectively, to the current-generation product.
Available beginning today, CraveTV and Shomi, which are available only to a select number of Canadians due to subscription dependencies, look and feel very similar to the flat, minimal aesthetic all other Apple TV apps have. In the past, companies have explained that while they can suggest features and designs to Apple, they don’t actually build the Apple TV apps themselves.
CraveTV recently added Chromecast support to its iOS and Android apps, which furthered Bell’s vision to be available on any screen, anywhere. It launched with AirPlay support on iPhone and iPad.
Rogers and Shaw debuted Shomi last year with Xbox 360 support, but has yet to offer it up to other consoles, including the current-generation Xbox or PlayStation 4. Shomi also lacks AirPlay or Chromecast support, but the company has suggested it is exploring those options.
While Apple TV support is certainly welcome in homes that have multiple televisions, CraveTV requires an accompaying television package from one of its partners. That list is growing, but there are major omissions, including Cogeco, Shaw and Rogers.
Shomi, on the other hand, is available to both internet and television subscribers, but the list of compatible providers is limited to its two owners: Shaw and Rogers.
Earlier this year, the CRTC ruled that hybrid over-the-air services like Shomi and Rogers may be required to open up to all Canadian internet users in exchange for having exclusive content on set-top boxes.