Apple has reportedly pulled out of negotiations with the NFL to carry the American football league’s Sunday Ticket streaming subscription in 2023.
The report comes from Puck’s (paywalled) Dylan Byers (h/t 9to5Mac). Until this report, the iPhone maker was reportedly the frontrunner for next year’s NFL Sunday Ticket.
NFL Sunday Ticket is the National Football League’s subscription service that gives viewers access to all out-of-market games weekly.
Sources told Byers that Apple was unhappy with certain limitations of the deal.
For one, the NFL doesn’t allow streaming Sunday Ticket games internationally. Additionally, it doesn’t offer access to in-market games that usually air on local channels.
Danial Kaplan from The Athletic corroborates the claim from Puck. Kaplan posted on Twitter that additional sources confirmed that Apple backed out of the deal.
Apple has been making a push into sports recently. The company signed a 10-year deal to air MLS games earlier this year and has streaming deals with Major League Baseball.
But the deal for the NFL sports package doesn’t seem to please Apple. Sources say that Apple doesn’t “see the logic” to justify the $3.5 billion asking price from the NFL.
That leaves a couple of other streamers at the forefront of the race for NFL Sunday Ticket in 2023. Both YouTube and Amazon have reportedly bid on Sunday Ticket.
Sunday Ticket has been a part of DirecTV for almost 30 years, but that deal runs out at the end of this season. One way or another, there will be a new home for the sports package starting in 2023.
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