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If Amazon.com's (Nasdaq: AMZN ) Cloud Player and Netflix didn't already give Hollywood enough to worry about, Friday brought news that Cablevision (NYSE: CVC ) is now offering TV software for the iPad.
At issue is what and where content can be streamed. Both Cablevision and Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC ) allow customers to broadcast some live TV via the iPad but only within their homes, and within spitting distance of a set-top box.
Cablevision amusingly pitched its app as offering conveniences that set-top boxes can't match, including the flexibility of watching television in uncommon areas. The bathroom, for example.
Can you imagine the ad pitching this feature? "Honey, I'll be back in 20. Modern Family is coming on." So much for gathering everyone around the TV.
Whether these services improve to offer out-of-the-home viewing is unknown at this point. But it doesn't look likely. Hollywood wants distribution fees; cable companies want to offer services yet also preserve profits. Expect these competing interests to clash.
Is a legal battle worth the hassle? Should investors be paying attention to how this tussle unfolds? You tell us. Please vote in the poll below and then leave a comment to tell us how you're using tablets to consume entertainment.