Apple aims for April launch of TV service with CBS, Viacom and Starz

By Kenneth Li and Stephen Nellis (Reuters) - Apple Inc is targeting an April event to introduce a streaming television service that will likely include subscription TV services from CBS Corp, Viacom Inc and Lions Gate Entertainment Corp's Starz among others as well as its own original content, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday. Apple has long hinted at a planned video service, spending $2 billion in Hollywood to produce its own content and signing major stars such as Oprah Winfrey. The TV service is expected to launch globally, a person familiar with the matter said, an ambitious move to rival services from Netflix Inc and Amazon.com Inc's Prime Video

Reuters February 14, 2019 05:05:12 IST
Apple aims for April launch of TV service with CBS, Viacom and Starz

Apple aims for April launch of TV service with CBS Viacom and Starz

By Kenneth Li and Stephen Nellis

(Reuters) - Apple Inc is targeting an April event to introduce a streaming television service that will likely include subscription TV services from CBS Corp, Viacom Inc and Lions Gate Entertainment Corp's Starz among others as well as its own original content, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

Apple has long hinted at a planned video service, spending $2 billion in Hollywood to produce its own content and signing major stars such as Oprah Winfrey. The TV service is expected to launch globally, a person familiar with the matter said, an ambitious move to rival services from Netflix Inc and Amazon.com Inc's Prime Video. Apple’s App Store, where the service is likely to be distributed, is currently available in more than 100 countries.

But it has kept its precise plans for how it will distribute those shows a secret, even as investors have started to fixate on revenue from paid subscriptions as a replacement for growth from iPhone sales, which declined over the holiday shopping quarter for the first time ever last year.

Apple aims to bring together its own shows into one central location with content from media companies, saving iPhone and other Apple device users from having to juggle multiple apps for those channels, the sources said. Apple is aiming to resell TV channels subscriptions similar to Amazon, whose Prime Video Service resells Starz and other channels and keeps a cut of the sales.

Apple is also in discussions with HBO, part of AT&T Inc-owned WarnerMedia, to become part of the service and it could yet make it in time for the launch, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The terms of Apple's deals could not be learned. Apple has typically sought a cut of between 30 percent for apps in the App Store to 15 percent for premium channel apps such as HBO.

Apple, CBS, HBO, Starz and Viacom declined to comment. CNBC earlier reported Apple was targeting an April or May launch for its service.

The television services launch comes as Apple builds out its services segment, which brought in $37.1 billion in its fiscal 2018.

The Wall Street Journal this week reported that major publishers such as the New York Times and Washington Post balked at the proposed terms of a possible paid news service from Apple in which the iPhone maker would keep as much as half of subscription revenues. An announcement for the news service is expected in March, Buzzfeed reported.

(Reporting by Kenneth Li in Osaka, Japan and Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Tom Brown)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.