Apple Takes On Netflix, Amazon With $1 Billion Investment For Original Shows: Video Streaming Service Coming Soon?
Apple has prepared tons of cash to acquire and produce original content, according to a recent Wall Street Journal report.
It's no secret that Apple has been flirting with the idea of branching out to content creation. It has already launched a few shows, one of them being a spinoff of James Corden's Carpool Karaoke that's exclusive to Apple Music, its own streaming service. Now it's reportedly investing $1 billion to create more.
Apple Might Join The Video Streaming Market
If true, Apple's move will cause streaming service rivals Amazon, HBO, Netflix, and Hulu to keep watch. The market is crowded, to make an understatement. Hence, it won't be easy for Apple to just enter. Netflix, currently the king of original programming, has a firm grip on the video streaming crowd, so does Amazon and Hulu.
If it's just a matter of creating original content, there's no doubt that Apple has vast amounts of money for that. Marketing and convincing its audience base to watch the programs is a different story altogether, however.
The Wall Street Journal reports Apple's planned budget is about half of what HBO spent on content last year, which is a big deal for a company with little to no experience in original shows.
Apple could make as much as 10 original shows, people familiar with the plan said. The decision lines up pretty much with Apple senior VP Eddy Cue's plans to offer high-quality video on Apple Music.
With the budget in mind, there remains a question about platforms. Could the music streaming service be home to Apple's new shows? Or will the company create a new service dedicated to video? That factor is uncertain.
The report says Hollywood veterans and former Sony execs Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg will handle Apple's plans for original programming. With them now working at Apple's Los Angeles offices, the plans seem all but confirmed.
Hollywood Is A Goldmine For Silicon Valley
The rise of streaming services has made Silicon Valley thrilled to take on Hollywood. Netflix and Amazon have both reaped their share of Emmy trophies thanks to original content, making both names synonymous with quality TV.
Hulu too could join the ranks thanks to the critically acclaimed The Handmaid's Tale, which stands to win Emmy awards this September.
How Apple Can Succeed In The Video Streaming Market
It's not the about the awards, of course, but about being taken seriously. Streaming has evolved from being a gimmick to a formidable threat to traditional cable TV. It helps that Amazon and Netflix offer attractive pricing models: for around $10 a month, you can watch anything you like in their respective libraries. For Netflix, that includes Orange is the new Black, House of Cards, Narcos, and more. For Amazon, there's Transparent, The Man in the High Castle, and Mozart in the Jungle.
Apple has the money — and the people — to form a plan. But right now, the market is tough. It will need to do either of two things: convince people they need to switch to Apple's own streaming service or appeal to them as a complementary service on top of Netflix or Amazon.