Apple’s Video Streaming Service Expected to Launch in April

Posted on February 13, 2019 by Mehedi Hassan in Apple with 14 Comments

Update: Bloomberg is reporting that Apple will launch both the new video service and the news subscription service on March 25 at a services-focused event. The company has apparently invited big Hollywood stars, including Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Garner and director JJ Abrams to the event.

Original story follows.

Apple’s much-awaited video streaming service could be going public in a couple of months time. CNBC is today reporting that Cupertino is targeting an April launch for its new video service, though it could end up launching the new service in early May, too.

Apple’s new video service will be available through the existing TV app in iOS. The service will offer original content from Apple, available for free to Apple device owners, as well as a platform that lets users subscribe to other digital services.

The idea behind the service is that you will be able to stream Apple’s own original content, and also have access to content from other shows and services like HBO. CNBC is reporting that Apple has so far managed to get CBS, Starz, and Viacom to join the “Channels” service on the platform, which allows users to subscribe to other services through Apple.

HBO is still in talks with Cupertino and could end up joining the service — however, the company isn’t getting a good deal from Apple, at least for now. In fact, Apple is apparently taking a 30% cut on the revenue generated by these channels, which is double the amount the company takes when users subscribe to services like HBO Now independently through the App Store.

Apple is pushing for a similar, aggressive revenue cut for its news subscription too, asking for a whopping 50% revenue cut from publishers.

On the original content front, Apple has managed to get some big names to start working on its original movies and shows. The company will reportedly offer its original content for free to Apple device owners, which is certainly going to be a huge benefit for those with an iPhone, an iPad, or an Apple TV.

The company still has a big problem ahead of itself — and that is, of course, Netflix. CNBC reports that Netflix won’t be available as a channel on Apple’s video streaming service, and considering that Netflix no longer allows iOS users to subscribe through the App Store to avoid paying the 15% revenue fee to Apple, that’s likely not going to change. Plus, Netflix has an unbeatable dominance on the streaming service market, and Apple will have a huge task ahead of itself once its own video streaming service does launch.

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Comments (15)

15 responses to “Apple’s Video Streaming Service Expected to Launch in April”

  1. lvthunder

    As long as the apps support the TV app like HBO Now then it's fine. It doesn't matter to me if it's a channel or not. I'm looking forward to checking out this service.

  2. Tony Barrett

    Netflix already commands the market, and that isn't going to change. Amazon couldn't stop it, and nor will Apple. Apple will want to make their streaming service appeal at launch, but their demands are high - as usual. I think that Apple's service will only appeal to Apple users, and then only a small subset of those who will literally pay for anything with an Apple logo on it. I totally understand why Netflix wouldn't want to be included - the cut Apple are asking for is obscene.

    • red.radar

      In reply to ghostrider:

      Disagree. I canceled my netflix subscription long ago. Amazon Prime Video has just as much orginal content as Netflix. And I get it for free w/Prime... Didn't see the benefit to subscribe to both.

      If Apple launchs family friendly content I will give it a look.

      Netflix is dead to me.

      • BrianEricFord

        In reply to red.radar:

        I agree that it’s true that Netflix isn’t unassailable.

        I disagree that Amazon is producing anywhere NEAR as much original content as Netflix. Frankly, Amazon has Mrs. Maisel, that “Nazis Won” show, and the one that might have gotten cancelled (?) after the lead was accused of groping his co-stars. And LotR show in the works. You can count on one hand their prestige original shows and then be hard pressed to name anything else.

        Netflix outstrips them when it comes to the prestige shows — by a lot — and then it’s not even close if you add in the dozens of shows they make that cost a lot less but probably help pay for the other shows.

        It’s good that you get what you need out of a service that is bundled with Prime (that’s different than free, btw) but it’s just not accurate to say they’re competing on a quantity level and subjectively, I would say it’s not even that close on a quality or acclaim level. Frankly, I think Amazon needs to hope for a new major hit soon.

    • lvthunder

      In reply to ghostrider:

      So you are for monopolys I guess. Well Netflix is here so no one else should get involved. Imagine if everyone thought that in the car industry when Ford was dominant with the model T no one stepped up and gave them competition.

  3. provision l-3

    To a certain extent how successful this will be is dependent on Apple. If they keep it on Apple platforms only then they will probably make a decent amount of money but will have a hard time getting to a Netflix level of popularity. If they open in it like Apple Music then they could likely do fairly well. I think the obvious advantage they have over netflix is being able to bundle Music+News+Video at a discounted rate. It would certainly give Apple and advantage over Netflix, Hulu and Spotify.

  4. dontbe evil

    apple fans are so excited to be milked even more from their beloved company

  5. RonV42

    As long as Apple doesn't have a monopoly position with content I am sure it will work for their dedicated user base.  It's taken Apple this long due to them thinking they can lock in content providers like they locked in music labels with iTunes in the beginning and cut of other music service competitors.   Apple now has to compete with services that run agnostic on any platform.

  6. TroyTruax

    I purposely use a Roku (as opposed to Apple TV or Fire TV) to avoid getting locked into eco systems. If the Apple streaming service isn't available as an app on Roku I won't be tuning in. It really doesn't matter to me what they have. I have so much TV to watch now, I really don't need more.

  7. mattbg

    Apple does have one selling point - customers who are not averse to paying for quality. It's why their devices are profitable compared to their competitors, and why iOS apps are better-serviced. That has some value.

    Personally, I am glad that they're taking a crack at paid news aggregation and video streaming. Neither of these industries have sustainable business models (I include Netflix in that statement) and it's time someone started exploring something for the long term with customers that are willing to pay.

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