LOS ANGELES — Apple, which has historically not participated in media mergers, looked at possibly acquiring Time Warner, but nothing came of it, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Time Warner owns the Warner Bros. studio, CNN and the Cartoon Network, is home to Harry Potter and Batman films, TV powerhouses The Big Bang Theory and Gotham, DC Comics and the Time Inc. magazine portfolio (Time, Entertainment Weekly, Fortune.)
Apple sees two-thirds of its revenues from the iPhone, but the fastest growing division within Apple is the Services category, which includes iTunes and Apple Music.
Wireless provider AT&T looks to be Time Warner's major suitor. Shares of the company rose more than 8% Friday after reports from Bloomberg and the Journal said AT&T is in advanced talks to be acquired by telecom giant AT&T. Beyond wireless plans, AT&T is now also a major player in both broadband distribution, via its U-Verse network, and owns satellite provider DirecTV.
There were reports in 2015 that Apple was looking to get into original programming, a la Netflix and Amazon, to feed iTunes, which offers movies, TV shows and music from the major studios and labels. Instead, a production company announced a TV show, Planet of the Apps, produced in association with Apple, that will be an American Idol of sorts for the app world. Actresses and digital mavens Jessica Alba and Gwyneth Paltrow have signed as "mentors."
Apple had no comment.
Time Warner had $28 billion in revenue in 2015, vs. $234 billion for Apple's fiscal 2015.