Yesterday Apple revealed its new TV App which will launch in the fall. The new OTT video service will feature a who’s who of network channels such as HBO, Showtime, Starz, etc., children’s programming from the likes of Sesame Street and the Muppet’s, and original content from a few people you may have heard of like Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey. The service, called Apple TV+, will be available on a subscription basis and will initially be ad free.
This move represents Apple’s all-out assault on the streaming video game. Over the past few years they’ve watched from the sidelines as Netflix, Amazon and others racked up millions of subs with their own original video content. Now the space is getting even more cluttered with planned OTT launches from Disney and AT&T. So for Tim Cook and the gang this probably felt like a now or never moment to go big with video, and they’re clearing making their move right now.
It’ll be interesting to see how they bring Apple TV+ to market. Will they run it as a stand-alone subscription (price point tbd), or will they try to upsell a one price bundle with their Apple Music service, the way Amazon bundles multiple services under their Prime umbrella. Either way, I think we can safely say the OTT video wars are officially on.