UPDATE: Time Warner Cable Drops Channels from iPad App, Sues Viacom

We recently reported that Time Warner Cable had drawn significant controversy over its free live-streaming app that provides subscribers access to streaming television content via their iPad (only in their homes). AP reports that Time Warner Cable has bowed to the subsequent pressure from Fox Cable Networks, Viacom and Discovery — and will drop 12 cable channels from the app (20 channels will remain and Time Warner Cable suggests it has plans to add more). The three programmers had complained that the app violated their programming contracts.

“For the time being, we have decided to focus our iPad efforts on those enlightened programmers who understand the benefit and importance of allowing our subscribers — and their viewers — to watch their programming on any screen in their homes,” explained Time Warner Cable in a statement.

Since the AP story hit the wires, Time Warner Cable and Viacom announced they are countersuing each other in U.S. District Court. This case may be an important indicator regarding the growing debate over content and licensing rights amidst an era of mobile devices.

Related Los Angeles Times article: “Time Warner Cable and Viacom sue over iPad app” (4/8/11)

Related Forbes article: “Viacom Yanks Channels From iPad App, Raises Stakes In Streaming Standoff” (4/8/11)

Related Broadcasting & Cable article: “TWC Clicks iPad App Channel Count up to 73” (4/25/11)