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Al­pha­bet’s Se­cre­tive X Project Could Save the World

Industry Leaders - - Content Features -

Hulu is try­ing to com­pete with Net­flix. Ama­zon Prime is try­ing to take on Net­flix. Face­book is go­ing af­ter Ama­zon Prime. Youtube looks to en­ter the stream­ing game to com­pete with all three. Wait… looks like there’s a new ri­val on the block. Tim Cook led Ap­ple Inc. is about to give you a great rea­son to can­cel sub­scrip­tion to all the afore­men­tioned ser­vices. The Cu­per­tino gi­ant is spend­ing $1 bil­lion to ‘pro­cure and pro­duce’ orig­i­nal and ac­quired con­tent in the name of TV pro­gram­ming in 2018.

Ac­cord­ing to peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter, Ap­ple plans to buy and pro­duce as many as 10 tele­vi­sion shows with the money. It is be­lieved to be cre­at­ing orig­i­nal, high-qual­ity con­tent on Ap­ple’s mu­sic stream­ing ser­vice or a brand new video-cen­tered ser­vice. Ap­par­ently, Ap­ple SVP Eddy Cue has am­bi­tions to of­fer shows that ri­val HBO’S Game of Thrones.

Let’s face it, Ap­ple’s ini­tial at­tempt hasn’t ex­actly been tri­umphant. De­spite con­certed ef­forts, shows such as Planet of the Apps and Car­pool Karaoke failed to stand out. More­over, the reach of the shows has been lim­ited to users with Ap­ple mu­sic subscriptions.

With a large war chest and pre­mier tal­ent in the video pro­gram­ming divi­sion, it is likely the qual­ity of Ap­ple TV pro­gram­ming will go head to head with that of HBO’S or even Net­flix and com­pany. The stag­ger­ing bud­get will soon be handed over to Hol­ly­wood vet­er­ans Zack Van Am­burg and Jamie Er­licht, who joined Ap­ple ear­lier this month. Both the ex­ecs have be­gun

meet­ing with agents and have had talks about ac­quir­ing a cou­ple of shows.

Can Ap­ple make a move against Net­flix and Ama­zon, both of which have key showrun­ners in their turf?

Ap­ple Inc. will need at least one huge hit to emerge as a prom­i­nent player. Con­sid­er­ing Net­flix and Ama­zon have had head starts and big­ger bud­gets, Ap­ple will need so much more to milk its video of­fer­ing.

It’s not clear yet how the new shows will be re­leased to Ap­ple cus­tomers. Also, a new Ap­ple TV set-top box will launch later this year with sup­port for 4K out­put. The lat­est set-up box will be an­nounced along­side the new iphone and Ap­ple Watch mod­els.

Ap­ple aims to dou­ble its ser­vice busi­ness, which in­cludes Ap­ple Store, Ap­ple Pay and Ap­ple Mu­sic to $50 bil­lion by 2020.

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