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By Jason Snell for Macworld
Apple doesn’t officially participate in the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, but this year it’s all over the show. That’s because Apple has been cutting deals with major TV manufacturers to embed support for AirPlay 2 (and in at least one case, the iTunes movie and TV stores) in their 4K HDR televisions, and CES is when TV manufacturers make big announcements.
I’ve heard from some people who are baffled about why Apple would make it so that people aren’t forced to buy an Apple TV in order to get access to Apple’s video content. Those people are, quite frankly, thinking about an Apple that no longer exists, namely one that’s committed to making money on high-margin hardware sales.
For the last three years, ever since Apple turned the spotlight on its Services revenue line in January 2016, Apple has been gearing up to offset slowing iPhone growth with a new category that can bring the kind of revenue growth that pleases Wall Street. Services is Apple’s fastest growing revenue category, on a constant upward trajectory that is unmatched by any other part of its business.