Apple’s plans of launching its own streaming service has been in the pipeline for months. We first got wind of Apple launching its own TV service back in 2017, and now, three years later, Apple is all set to announce its Netflix competitor. The company is reportedly planning a gala event on March 25th to announce the service, along with a subscription-based news service. According to a report by Bloomberg, Apple has sent out invites to Hollywood starts including Jennifer Aniston, JJ Abrams, Jennifer Garner, Reese Witherspoon and more.
The upcoming video streaming service will be similar to Netflix and Amazon Prime Video and will include TV shows and movies either acquired or funded by Apple. So far, the Cupertino giant has around a dozen original programs including Carpool Karaoke and Battle of the Apps. However, these shows are made available for free and hasn’t been put behind a subscription plan yet. The paid service will reportedly launch this summer.
Furthermore, the subscription-based news service, Bloomberg reports, will be offered in the Apple News app where subscribers can access a bundle of titles for a monthly subscription. However, due to disputes about revenue sharing, some news publishers are wary of entering the space. Apple is still ironing out the final details and plans could change in the future.
The company’s renewed focus on digital services comes after a slowdown in iPhone sales. iPhones have been the cash cow for Apple ever since its launch. For the first time in 2018, Apple registered a slowdown in sales growth even in the holiday season, a time when Apple has historically performed well.
Apple has thus shifted focus to digital services to keep revenues flowing. Apple Music is already a big hit with over 50 million subscribers. The report also claims Apple is apparently planning to bundle all the offerings into one monthly subscription, similar to Amazon Prime.
The streaming video service has been under development for years. The division is being led by former Sony Pictures executives Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht. The shows are set to start airing in 2019, in line with the present information about a March 25 launch. The content is likely to be present through Apple’s TV app on iPhones and iPads and on Apple TVs which launched in 2016. There will also be some free content that users may be able to watch without paying. Furthermore, the service could also include shows from other networks.