Bloomberg recently spoke with ESPN Executive Sean Bratches who said that the two companies are engaged in early negotiations but that a deal is not imminent. If a deal is completed it would allow ESPN subscribers to stream ESPN content via the Apple TV.
WatchESPN’s app for the iPhone and the iPad allows users to watch ESPN content on the go but does require customers to subscribe to a participating cable operator.
Disney and Apple’s relationship has always been strong and well documented. In fact Steve Jobs was the largest shareholder in Disney after he sold Pixar and Disney CEO Bob Iger became a member of Apple’s Board of Director’s late last year. So while the two companies are claiming that a deal if far from imminent it is definitely close to likely that they will get a deal worked out.
Back in 2006 ESPN and ABC were the first broadcasting networks to offer sports programming on iTunes, and just earlier this year there were reports that ESPN and Apple were working on bringing live sports score updates to Siri.
The Apple TV already offers a number of sports streaming content options including NBA League Pass, NHL Gamecenter, and MLB.tv.