Apple Is Finally Getting into the Original Programming Business
Following in the footsteps of streaming giants Netflix, Hulu and Amazon, Apple appears to finally be entering the world of original programming. Ever since Netflix took their Instant service a step further by developing their own original television shows, streaming competitors have been rushing to keep up, and in doing so they’ve increasingly pushed Netflix and their own businesses forward in ambition. Apple is the only mega-brand that hasn’t developed its own original content, but it looks like that might be about to change.
Variety reports that Apple has held “preliminary conversations” with various Hollywood executives recently to discern the interest and advantages of developing their own Apple-branded original content. It’s unclear if the company is interested in developing original films, television shows, or both, but Apple did recently bid on the stars of Top Gear once they exited the long-running and wildly popular BBC series. They lost out to Amazon, but their interest signifies an impending leap from content provider to content creator.
Netflix paved the way for its competitors by introducing the Instant service, and in recent years the company has developed its own original television shows and has now begun producing original films — those films will be released theatrically, while Netflix will hold the exclusive streaming rights, cutting out premium cable services like Epix (Netflix has opted out of renewing their contract with Epix, which expires next month).
Hulu has also begun generating original television content, while Amazon has its own slate of original series and recently announced plans to develop original film content.
Apple is one of the world’s foremost brands, offering computers, phones, digital apps and various devices — if the company decides to develop its own original content it would make them an instant competitor with Netflix and Amazon (and to a lesser extent, Hulu) given Apple’s immense reach and popularity. Put it this way: you can stream Netflix, Amazon and Hulu content on Apple devices, but there’s no Netflix device to stream Apple content.
Apple has yet to confirm any tentative plans to develop original content, but should they choose to do so, Netflix may finally have some serious competition.