Apple is reportedly planning to launch its own original TV content by the end of the year. It may use the material as a way to boost subscriptions to Apple Music.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the content would be a big step up from the current limited video offerings on the service that are mainly short documentaries on musicians. Instead it is in talks with producers about buying up original scripted TV shows. It’s also looking at commissioning movies, though that is more of an idea at this stage.
The strategy appears not to involve competing with the sheer range of Netflix and Amazon video, but rather to offer a limited selection of high-quality content that would be enough to capture those on the fence about subscribing to a music service. The WSJ notes that would be particularly important as a way to distinguish Apple Music from Spotify, which has a similar music catalog.
The report also says Apple has told producers it would be willing to give them figures about how many people watch each show and even a demographic breakdown, something Netflix doesn’t do. That does open up the possibility Apple might then use this as a negotiating point for future rights fees or even try to get producers to agree a payment based on the number of views rather than a flat fee.