Apple’s long-awaited and controversial streaming service may finally have a release date – or at least a release window. According to Reuters, Apple is expected to launch its new streaming television service at an event this April. The TV service does not yet have a name, but has already attracted some of the most influential figures in the entertainment and media industries. Can Apple dominate the streaming market like it has to the personal computer and mobile phone markets?
It’s tough to say; in the world of streaming, content is king. While Apple certainly has the budget and industry connections to put together some formidable licensing deals, it has yet to be seen whether the computing and media giant can find a niche in the already-crowded streaming market.
Still, according to Reuters, Apple has already spent $2 billion on content for the new streaming service, including some deals with many of the biggest names in Hollywood and television. With such a massive budget behind this new streaming service, it’s clear that Apple is hoping to rival Netflix and Amazon Prime Video; obviously, it needs all the help it can get to lure customers over to its new and unproven streaming service. Oprah Winfrey has reportedly signed a deal for new programs, and Apple has agreements with CBS Corporation, Viacom Inc., and Lionsgate Entertainment. Future agreements with HBO are reportedly in the works.
Apple is hoping that iOS and Mac users will prefer not to juggle multiple apps for all of their streaming needs and will instead prefer to stream from one centralized, built-in app. Apple has already revolutionized how many iOS users listen to music and podcasts with their own native apps, so it makes sense on some levels that iOS users would want the same from a video streaming app.
Does Apple have what it takes to challenge the biggest names in streaming? We’ll find out this year.