Apple is reportedly in talks with Comcast regarding a streaming deal that would allow the Cupertino-based company to stream video to their popular set-top box using a method that would bypass congestion on the Internet.

People familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal that discussions are still in early stages and there are multiple hurdles to overcome. If successful, however, it could usher in a new era of modern television viewing.

Sources say Apple is interested in effectively replacing cable set-top boxes with their own Apple TV hardware which would allow subscribers to stream live television, watch on-demand programming and even watch recorded television stored in the cloud.

Apple wants streamed content to be separated from public Internet traffic over what is called the "last mile" - the portion of an Internet connection that runs from an ISP to customers' homes. It's this bit of the network that often becomes overloaded when too many people in a given area access the web at once, effectively sucking up all the bandwidth and resulting in slow load times and laggy video.

Such a deal could be lucrative to both Apple and Comcast and offer an unrivaled service to customers. But first, the two companies will need to come to terms on a number of different issues including who controls the relationship with customers.

Those with knowledge of the situation say Apple wants users to sign in to the service using their Apple ID while Comcast wants to retain control over their customers and associated data.