updated 09:40 pm EDT, Fri April 15, 2011
Time Warner Cable iPad app gets channels back
Time Warner Cable started the weekend with word that it had recovered some of the channels for the TWCable TV iPad app (free, App Store) that it had lost to disagreements just weeks earlier. The streaming app now has Discovery's namesake channel as well as Animal Planet and TLC. Fox News, FX, and National Geographic have also arrived along with Lifetime Real Women, Military History, Sundance Central, and Wedding Central.
Not all of TWC's disputes are unresolved. Viacom is still holding out on the belief that it never granted rights to allow Internet streaming, even to TWC customers at home on a Wi-Fi connection. The cable provider has countered by arguing that its cable broadcast rights give it inherent rights. It currently has a declaratory judgment motion in front of a court that, if successful, could leave Viacom with no choice but to either give permission or pull its channels from all of TWC.
NBC has simultaneously confirmed the existence of its own pseudo-live iPad app, NBC Live (free, App Store). The app doesn't offer TV streaming of its own, despite the name, but instead is meant to provide social interaction in the middle of live TV shows. Viewers can make comments, answer polls or trivia, and sometimes join special social feeds with members from the cast or production crew of a given show.
The studio hasn't given any plans to have a true live iPad app but does offer many of its shows through Hulu Plus.