Peter Stern Resurfaces at Apple

Former TWC exec named VP, focused on subscription services
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An industry source confirmed that former Time Warner Cable exec Peter Stern has been hired by Apple as a vice president with a focus on subscription services.

Apple and Stern did not respond to inquiries on Tuesday about the hire, but The Wall Street Journal was first to report the hiring today, noting that Stern will report to Eddy Cue, the company’s SVP of Internet software and services, who has reportedly been trying to secure deals with programmers for a pay TV service but his brash negotiation style did not play well with broadcasters and other programmers, per an earlier report from the WSJ.

Apple also confirmed to the paper that Stern will be focused on cloud services and subscription services such as Apple Music and a potential (and long-rumored) streaming TV service.

Stern, who joined TWC in 2004, most recently served as the MSO’s EVP and chief product, people and strategy officer. Stern was also an important player there amid the emergence of authenticated TV Everywhere services, an inititiative embraced eagerly by TWC, which extended support to wide range of connected platforms, including Roku devices, the Xbox 360 and Xbox One and Samsung smart TVs. He departed following Charter Communication’s acquisition of TWC earlier this year.

The WSJ said Stern was part of a team that discussed a deal with Apple about delivering the MSO’s video service on an Apple TV device. A source with knowledge of those negotiations said Apple was viewed as arrogant by TWC and that it “wanted too much” amid promises that affixing the MSO’s service to the Apple brand would be more than enough to help the MSO reverse mounting video subscriber losses.

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The WSJ suggested that Stern’s knowledge and understanding of the pay TV industry and its business models (something that Apple has struggled with) could help Apple rekindle its pay TV plans. 

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