updated 12:12 am EDT, Wed August 14, 2013
Company had comprehensive database of available TV content
Matcha.tv -- a startup "second screen for TV' service that offered comprehensive cable and online video service listings, social channels for managing and talking about TV watching and other features -- has been bought by Apple, reports claim. The promising service and matching iOS app, which routinely featured in the top charts for entertainment apps, shut down quickly and mysteriously at the end of May. Users could use Matcha to discover content on digital, streaming and cable services, rate shows and get recommendations based on what they enjoyed.
The purchase price for the company hasn't been revealed, but the purchase was confirmed by Apple after Venturebeat first reported the buyout. How Apple intends to use the technology acquired from the startup isn't clear, but CEOs Steve Jobs and Tim Cook have both expressed an interest in "reinventing" television service. Apple has been on a bit of a buying spree lately, acquiring location-data service Locationary and transit-directions service HopStop.
Back when Matcha first shut down, CEO Guy Piekarz told reporters that the company would focus on a "new direction." A source in the original report estimated Apple's price for the company at as little as $1.5 million, but other sources have said that figure is incorrect -- implying that the price was higher. Should Apple find a way to incorporate Matcha's comprehensive cross-medium listing service into a future Apple TV or TV product, it would certainly be closer to giving consumers a larger and better TV experience.