Apple recruits four TV executives to growing video team, offers hints at future programmin...

Posted:
in General Discussion edited September 2017
Apple recently hired four veteran television executives to join its quickly growing video content team, with the new recruits tasked to head up original programming initiatives including documentary series.




According to a report from Variety, Apple picked up former Sony Pictures Television head of current programming Kim Rozenfeld to fill a similar role in Cupertino. Along with leading current programming, Rozenfeld will head up documentary series development, the report said.

So far, Apple has only dabbled in documentary content, purchasing exclusive rights to music-focused films "Kygo: Stole the Show" and "Can't Stop, Won't Stop." The documentaries debuted on Apple Music over the summer to mixed reviews.

Rozenfeld will answer to his prior Sony bosses Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht, who in June moved to Apple to head up original programming.

Along with Rozenfeld, Max Aronson and Ali Woodruff, also from Sony, have been brought on board as development executives. Aronson was VP of drama development at Sony Pictures TV, while Woodruff served as director of creative affairs.

Outside of former Sony staff, Apple recently hired WGN America head of publicity Rita Cooper Lee, who will lead communications for the tech giant's video unit under the guidance of Tom Neumayr. Lee is Apple's second WGN hire, the first being former president and general manager of WGN America and Tribune Studios Matt Cherniss.

Apple is quickly building out its in-house video team as it moves to procure and produce original content. So far, the company has aired two original shows, "Planet of the Apps" and "Carpool Karaoke," but many more are rumored to be in the works.

A report last month claimed Apple has budgeted $1 billion on original programming for 2018, a fraction of what other production houses and streaming companies intend to spend over the same period. More recently, Apple is said to be mulling a move into the storied Culver Studios lot in Hollywood.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 34
    Haven't we seen this before--Apple hiring top flight experts in cars and watches and health monitoring? It's kind of surprising compared to the Steve Jobs era. I don't recall Apple hiring mobile phone experts ahead of the iPhone, or music experts ahead of iTunes. As we've seen in pro sports, "dream teams" made up of high-priced free agents, don't always lead to championships. 
    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 2 of 34
    I wonder if there's a TV studio in the spaceship?
  • Reply 3 of 34
    Haven't we seen this before--Apple hiring top flight experts in cars and watches and health monitoring? It's kind of surprising compared to the Steve Jobs era. I don't recall Apple hiring mobile phone experts ahead of the iPhone, or music experts ahead of iTunes. As we've seen in pro sports, "dream teams" made up of high-priced free agents, don't always lead to championships. 

    Apple may or may not have hired mobile phone experts ahead of the iPhone but that's a much different situation more similar to the development of the iPod. Apple had the hardware technology and software platform available to create a revolutionary product. Much of the knowledge and talent required was already available at Apple. Even so, they still worked with Mororala first on the ROKR E1 and then in coloboration with Cingular (Now AT&T) on the iPhone.

    Manufacturing a phone, while not identical to the process of a laptop or iPod, has many similarities. Getting into the content production business is a whole different ball game.
  • Reply 4 of 34
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,569moderator
    Perhaps Apple could create some documentaries detailing various aspect of the world's natural environment and various public and private efforts to mitigate pollution, human encroachment into remaining pristine natural areas, resource conservation, energy production, water use, ocean health, etc.  The list of potential topics to report on would be long, and would help to advance both Apple's own efforts to market environmental responsibility and the education of the public.  Further, it could help to spread successful ideas to those seeking their own local solutions.  

    All filmed and produced using iPhones and iPads, of course.  
    edited September 2017 fotoformatpropodlolliver
  • Reply 5 of 34
    All filmed and produced using iPhones and iPads, of course.  
    When you HEAR the finished product, don 't complain. You asked for it.
    ireland
  • Reply 6 of 34
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    Haven't we seen this before--Apple hiring top flight experts in cars and watches and health monitoring? It's kind of surprising compared to the Steve Jobs era. I don't recall Apple hiring mobile phone experts ahead of the iPhone, or music experts ahead of iTunes. As we've seen in pro sports, "dream teams" made up of high-priced free agents, don't always lead to championships. 
    Because you don't recall it, doesn't mean it didn't happen. 

    In fact, Apple didn't build iTunes from scratch: it was originally a product called Soundjam that had been on sale for a couple of years before Cupertino bought it.  The team responsible for Apple's chip design was also an acquisition. Both happened during the Jobs era. 
    SolilolliverStrangeDays
  • Reply 7 of 34
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,569moderator
    Haven't we seen this before--Apple hiring top flight experts in cars and watches and health monitoring? It's kind of surprising compared to the Steve Jobs era. I don't recall Apple hiring mobile phone experts ahead of the iPhone, or music experts ahead of iTunes. As we've seen in pro sports, "dream teams" made up of high-priced free agents, don't always lead to championships. 
    Apple acquihires often.  Siri, TouchID, to name two, came out of work initiated outside Apple.  And even Steve Jobs, who they acquihired via the NEXT acquisition.  Apple acquihired the Beats executive team, which participated in the creation of Apple Music.  So they are known to bring aboard outside expertise in various areas.  Apple has been hiring away Employees of GPU-maker Imagination Technologies.  They setup offices in Waterloo Canada and hired away Blackberry employees.  Through hiring or acquisition, Apple has a history of onboard ig experts in areas it wants to enter.  Seems these activities, for Apple, actually do often lead to success. 
    edited September 2017 lolliverStrangeDays
  • Reply 8 of 34
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,033member
    Apple's acquisition list is extensive. Some are very clear as they keep the same name, like Siri and Beats, while others are still very obvious while not adopting the company or brand name, like NeXT or PA Semi, and there are all the others where it can get really fuzzy as to how valuable that purchase has helped the company's bottom line.

    lolliver
  • Reply 9 of 34
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    Soli said:
    Apple's acquisition list is extensive. Some are very clear as they keep the same name, like Siri and Beats, while others are still very obvious while not adopting the company or brand name, like NeXT or PA Semi, and there are all the others where it can get really fuzzy as to how valuable that purchase has helped the company's bottom line.

    Mmm. More than I thought. 


  • Reply 10 of 34
    irelandireland Posts: 17,794member
    Haven't we seen this before--Apple hiring top flight experts in cars and watches and health monitoring? It's kind of surprising compared to the Steve Jobs era. I don't recall Apple hiring mobile phone experts ahead of the iPhone, or music experts ahead of iTunes. As we've seen in pro sports, "dream teams" made up of high-priced free agents, don't always lead to championships. 
    Apple did this for iPod, iTunes and even touch screens. You are making the mistake of thinking Steve Jobs did everything at Apple. ARM processors and on and on.
    edited September 2017 StrangeDays
  • Reply 11 of 34
    YvLyYvLy Posts: 89member
    Here is my problem: Regarding content creation, Apple is following.  I want them to lead. With content creation that is meaningful, has essence. 
  • Reply 12 of 34
    Perhaps Apple could create some documentaries detailing various aspect of the world's natural environment and various public and private efforts to mitigate pollution, human encroachment into remaining pristine natural areas, resource conservation, energy production, water use, ocean health, etc.  The list of potential topics to report on would be long, and would help to advance both Apple's own efforts to market environmental responsibility and the education of the public.  Further, it could help to spread successful ideas to those seeking their own local solutions.  

    All filmed and produced using iPhones and iPads, of course.  
    Who would watch that? Seems like an ultra niche audience.
  • Reply 13 of 34

    YvLy said:
    Here is my problem: Regarding content creation, Apple is following.  I want them to lead. With content creation that is meaningful, has essence. 
    Has essence? What does that mean?

    Seems to me Apple is catering to Wall Street here. Wall Street is obsessed with “services” and iPhone is all tapped out and Apple has no new innovative hardware in the pipeline so they want Apple extracting m0r3 revenue from the existing install base. I guess we’ll see if people are interested in subscribing to content from Apple. I’m not convinced they are.
  • Reply 14 of 34
    All filmed and produced using iPhones and iPads, of course.  
    When you HEAR the finished product, don 't complain. You asked for it.
    TV shows that use an iphone to record video have a separate audio recording system. 
  • Reply 15 of 34
    I think they are going to have to buy a major video content producer to be a significant player in this space. If Netflix is out of the question because of current cost, what about Disney? Sony? Alternatively, if Apple could get enough content providers to sign off so that you could access their content through ITunes for a fixed monthly price (similar to Apple Music) that could work too. The content providers would get paid royalties as their content is accessed, but the consumer has a fixed monthly cost. I'm certainly not going to be paying for multiple video streaming services per month. Economically, that puts you right back where you were with the cable company that you cut the cord to because you were paying for too many channels you had no interest in.
  • Reply 16 of 34
    Hire Bob Iger away from Disney to run an entire Apple entertainment division, including movie and TV production. Get rid of Eddy Cue, get rid of Jimmy Iovine.
  • Reply 17 of 34
    brucemcbrucemc Posts: 1,541member

    YvLy said:
    Here is my problem: Regarding content creation, Apple is following.  I want them to lead. With content creation that is meaningful, has essence. 
    Has essence? What does that mean?

    Seems to me Apple is catering to Wall Street here. Wall Street is obsessed with “services” and iPhone is all tapped out and Apple has no new innovative hardware in the pipeline so they want Apple extracting m0r3 revenue from the existing install base. I guess we’ll see if people are interested in subscribing to content from Apple. I’m not convinced they are.
    I do not believe Apple is catering to WS in this case, as Apple doesn't seem to pay them much attention anyways (if Apple did, the company would have been sunk long ago).  WS is obsessed with potential growth - and yes "services" are certainly the latest buzzword as they feel it is more stable/predictable with recurring revenue (subscriptions).  However, the "big money" in services (or what they consider in this bucket) is in businesses that capture a near-monopoly and monetize through targeted advertising (Google, Facebook, what they hope for Snap, etc).  Outside of Netflix - which has a P/E ratio of over 200 - most content companies don't get anywhere near that valuation.

    So Apple getting into a video streaming service will not, from a bottom line income perspective on its own, move the needle much (even after say 5 years of operation).  Netflix example - 2016 revenue was $8.8B, cost of revenue (mostly content) was $6B, and their overall net income was $300M.  It will certainly help the overall services business grow (contributing to that average growth of 18-20% per year).

    As for people being interested - it all depends on the content and how it is priced.  If the content ends up being good (whether their own direct license/produced content, or what they license for sale from others), then a number of consider subscribing.  Apple is still the #1 seller/renter of digital content.
  • Reply 18 of 34
    nhtnht Posts: 4,522member
    All filmed and produced using iPhones and iPads, of course.  
    When you HEAR the finished product, don 't complain. You asked for it.
    Non-issue:

    https://www.rode.com/ixlr

    http://tascam.com/product/ixz/

    http://tascam.com/product/ixr/

    You can edit the final product on LumaFusion with 3 video/audio tracks + 3 audio tracks.
  • Reply 19 of 34
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,686member
    sog35 said:
    Haven't we seen this before--Apple hiring top flight experts in cars and watches and health monitoring? It's kind of surprising compared to the Steve Jobs era. I don't recall Apple hiring mobile phone experts ahead of the iPhone, or music experts ahead of iTunes. As we've seen in pro sports, "dream teams" made up of high-priced free agents, don't always lead to championships. 
    Lebron Miami won 2 titles.
    Golden State Warriors won 2 titles
    Lebron Cavs won a title.
    Boston Celtics superteam won a title.

    Sorry bro.  Super teams win titles ALOT.

    Nothing wrong with hiring talent.  

    Apple DID hire talent with iTunes. They bought out the company that created iTunes and its employees.  

    I'm pretty sure Apple hired new employees in making the iPhone. 

    Besides making devices like the iPhone is in Apple's traditional wheelhouse.   Making cars is not.  Health monitoring is not.  Making movies is not.  
    Buying out a company works because you know that the company gels already, that they have had their own hiring process, that any characters that dont get on are removed. Just hiring executives though?

    Also at the level these executives may not know much. I mean if you work for a long established company, particularly a production company, at the high level you are just making decisions about what content you are going to fund. Thats it. The real work is done at the producer and director level, and each show is effectively managed/produced independently.  These are the guys you need to hire, or fund, for new content. 
  • Reply 20 of 34
    YvLy said:
    Here is my problem: Regarding content creation, Apple is following.  I want them to lead. With content creation that is meaningful, has essence. 
    Who would watch that? Seems like an ultra niche audience.
    I scrolled too quickly and saw the latter as a reply to the former. I got sad, but then I realized it wasn’t a reply to it.

    And then I realized that it is.
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