Last week word reached us from the ever-ambiguous “Unnamed Source” about upcoming digital distribution of Star Wars TV shows on iOS devices.
This being something entirely new to the Star Wars franchise, and with the source also being new we got our Bothan spies to dig into the rumour and try to substantiate the facts.
Our source told us the following:
“A Disney branded app for Star Wars will launch on Apple TV devices, with plans to distribute the final Clone Wars episodes exclusively digitally only through the Apple TV device for a limited period of time. This will happen in this holiday season.
In 2014, plans are in an early stage to use the platform to deliver SW7 production news ‘live’ from the sets, followed with Star Wars Rebels in late 2014 taking us all the way through to SW7 release.”
The source followed this up with the following:
“Distribution will only be on Apple TV devices capable of running iOS7 and there has been no confirmation if the same app will be available to other iOS devices such as iPad or iPhone."
Our understanding is that iOS7 excludes the original Apple TV device, and means that only the smaller black video streaming device will have access to the app. There may also be regional restrictions in place.
Lucasfilm’s official line on Star Wars Clone Wars has always been that they are investigating ways to deliver the final episodes. They have also stated that they are looking at ways to keep fans informed on Episode 7 developments as the production proceeds. Many of you will remember the fantastic coverage starwars.com gave to the prequel development, and this may be Star Wars production diaries 2.0 for the social age.
From an Apple point of view they have an amazingly close relationship to Disney, with former CEO Steve Jobs having been a major shareholder in Disney following their purchase of Pixar (ironically a former Lucasfilm company – the circle of life anyone?!?!?!.) It makes sense for them to partner on content distribution, and with iOS 7 launching next month, and new rumoured Apple TV devices on the horizon – adding the Star Wars brand to the mix gives a whole new level of PR exposure.
As we at Jedi News mulled over whether we could break this story, reader Paul Longdon sent us a link to the following news story on Engadget.
With Disney launching a number of ‘channels’ on Apple TV including Disney Channel, and Disney XD (future home of Rebels) what started as a rumour sent into Jedi News suddenly looks like a distinct possibility. Whilst we can’t know for certain, there is certainly enough smoke here, to suggest there is a fire – and we could be about to see a whole new way to access and consume Star Wars content. As always, this is all just rumour and nothing is fact until announced by Lucasfilm, Disney or their respective partners – but it remains fun to speculate…