updated 11:40 am EDT, Thu April 16, 2009
SlingPlayer not approved
Sling Media's SlingPlayer app for the iPhone has been denied approval into Apple's App Store, according to an unconfirmed tip from a source close to Apple's approval processes. Although the program was described as an "impressive" application, the tip said that the media application was not approved due to pressure from AT&T executives concerned about effect of the app on the already-strained AT&T cellular network. According to the tip, which could not be confirmed Wednesday night, Apple executives went around the normal approval process to deny approval for the SlingPlayer app to appease AT&T.
The source said that AT&T was concerned about bandwidth on their network. SlingPlayer for the iPhone was designed to allow users to access television content via their mobile device, and would have streamed video over 3G as well as Wi-Fi. As iPhone users are increasingly common and are more likely to use data than competing platforms, their use of SlingPlayer creates a greater risk of saturating the 3G network.
BGR has since talked to Sling, which says it hasn't received a response from Apple in either direction regarding the app.
At least publicly, AT&T has no explicit bans on streaming video over 3G connections. The company recently called an anti-video terms-of-service agreement an error and currently has multiple phones that are explicitly supported by differing versions of SlingPlayer, including the BlackBerry Bold through the BlackBerry app as well as Windows Mobile devices.
Electronista hopes to hear from AT&T soon for comment.