Apple mulled distributing original video content on third-party platforms, report says

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in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited March 22
Days before Apple is expected to lift the veil on a hotly anticipated streaming video service, a report on Friday offers a few behind-the-scenes tidbits from the company's Hollywood partners, including speculation that distribution plans for the product may not be finalized.




Citing sources familiar with the matter, The Washington Post reports Apple has considered a wide variety of options for its as-yet-unannounced streaming service. From content to distribution, development plans have run the gamut.

Beyond work on a slate of original shows and overtures to premium cable channels, not much is known about the service. Apple has kept the initiative well under wraps, so much so that according to a report earlier today, even partner media companies are in the dark about what will be announced on Monday.

The Post reiterates the sentiment, saying Hollywood executives tasked with creating Apple's original offerings are unsure as to how the shows will be served up to audiences. Indeed, the report intimates that Apple might not be completely clear as to how it will present the product to consumers. Sources hope to glean an understanding of Apple's plans by watching Monday's keynote with the rest of the world, the report said.

"We don't know what they are going to do, but they are paying a ton of money," one executive said.

Apple reportedly mulled an iteration of the service that offered free shows to customers who paid for AppleCare, according to a Hollywood executive. Subsequent brainstorming sessions yielded a program that presented content through Apple TV.

"Whatever they try to sell on Monday, it's not what they started with and they are trying to figure out what kind of engine to put in while the plane is in the air," the person said.

Other sources provided limited information on the evolution of Apple's project. One person said the company considered striking deals to distribute its original content on outside platforms. The strategy was likely rejected, as recent reports suggest Apple will at launch offer the shows as freebies, enticing users into buying subscriptions to third-party services.

An executive from an unnamed streaming company told The Post Apple should not silo its service to Apple-branded devices, as doing so would cut it off from a huge market of set-top streamers and connected televisions that do not have access to iOS or tvOS.

Apple is widely expected to reveal its video streaming product at a special media event on Monday alongside a news subscription service. While the news product is anticipated to launch shortly thereafter, availability of the video service might arrive as late as this fall.

AppleInsider will be at Apple's event on March 25 with live coverage starting at 10 a.m. Pacific, 1 p.m. Eastern.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    kikkodkikkod Posts: 4member
    Wasn’t there talk of a low-cost Apple TV streaming dongle in development a while ago? A $20 piece of hardware (or even give it away for free upon sign up to a 2 year subscription) would go a long way to bring in millions of non-apple users - a Trojan horse of sorts that would lead to a number of those new users buying into other parts of the apple ecosystem.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 8
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 4,101member
    So all the recent rumors suggest this service is going to be nothing more than Apple re-selling other content providers stuff and getting a cut of it with Apple’s original programming being free for Apple hardware users. I’ve never thought Apple should be in the original content business. Spending a billion dollars or whatever it is just so they can get a cut of a Showtime subscription within the TV app seems ridiculous. And if the original content is free for Apple device users one wonders how good it will be. If this stuff was really good wouldn’t Apple want to charge for it and want it on as many platforms as possible?
  • Reply 3 of 8
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,979member
    So all the recent rumors suggest this service is going to be nothing more than Apple re-selling other content providers stuff and getting a cut of it with Apple’s original programming being free for Apple hardware users. I’ve never thought Apple should be in the original content business. Spending a billion dollars or whatever it is just so they can get a cut of a Showtime subscription within the TV app seems ridiculous. And if the original content is free for Apple device users one wonders how good it will be. If this stuff was really good wouldn’t Apple want to charge for it and want it on as many platforms as possible?
    Gosh you’re right, it sounds like Apple is going about it all wrong. Again. Drat.

    Or, we wait to see what they actually announce on Monday, and possibly criticize that, rather than second or third hand rumors. 
    fastasleepwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 8
    canukstormcanukstorm Posts: 1,949member
    So all the recent rumors suggest this service is going to be nothing more than Apple re-selling other content providers stuff and getting a cut of it with Apple’s original programming being free for Apple hardware users. I’ve never thought Apple should be in the original content business. Spending a billion dollars or whatever it is just so they can get a cut of a Showtime subscription within the TV app seems ridiculous. And if the original content is free for Apple device users one wonders how good it will be. If this stuff was really good wouldn’t Apple want to charge for it and want it on as many platforms as possible?
    Apple is treating their first-party content as a "loss leader".  It's a way to enhance the value of their devices and entice users to subscribe to 3rd party content.  We'll know more details on Monday & whether it works out for Apple (or not) only time will tell.  It definitely is a new and risky maneuver for Apple.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 8
    genovellegenovelle Posts: 967member
    So all the recent rumors suggest this service is going to be nothing more than Apple re-selling other content providers stuff and getting a cut of it with Apple’s original programming being free for Apple hardware users. I’ve never thought Apple should be in the original content business. Spending a billion dollars or whatever it is just so they can get a cut of a Showtime subscription within the TV app seems ridiculous. And if the original content is free for Apple device users one wonders how good it will be. If this stuff was really good wouldn’t Apple want to charge for it and want it on as many platforms as possible?
    Apple is treating their first-party content as a "loss leader".  It's a way to enhance the value of their devices and entice users to subscribe to 3rd party content.  We'll know more details on Monday & whether it works out for Apple (or not) only time will tell.  It definitely is a new and risky maneuver for Apple.
    It’s like they are putting up one dollar for each of the 900 million customers in their install base. Doesn’t seem very risky. It’s actually a third of what it cost them to acquire Beats for Apple Music. I think they will make original content free on Apple devices and available for subscribers of the Video Services on other platforms. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 8
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,972member
    So all the recent rumors suggest this service is going to be nothing more than Apple re-selling other content providers stuff and getting a cut of it with Apple’s original programming being free for Apple hardware users. I’ve never thought Apple should be in the original content business. Spending a billion dollars or whatever it is just so they can get a cut of a Showtime subscription within the TV app seems ridiculous. And if the original content is free for Apple device users one wonders how good it will be. If this stuff was really good wouldn’t Apple want to charge for it and want it on as many platforms as possible?
    Always with the handwringing. I feel like at this point you just want to see Eddy Cue fail.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 8
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,295member
    I read that as Apple Mueller ... lol
    edited March 24 watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 8
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,190member
    MacPro said:
    I read that as Apple Mueller ... lol
    You’re clearly losing your mind. ;)
    watto_cobra
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