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There’s been a lot of clamoring in recent years around Apple’s desire to make a splash in the digital entertainment space. Whether those aspirations involve creating its own original TV content, or merely trying to wage digital warfare against services such as Hulu and Netflix, still remains to be seen. But what we can be sure about, at this point, is that Apple’s ambitions are still alive and thriving — even though recent reports about the company’s interest in outright acquiring Netflix have fallen flat.
Well, Apple’s digital content aspirations are still alive and well, apparently, as the company’s Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services, Eddy Cue, sat down earlier this week with Executives from Paramount Pictures and Sony Pictures, according to a report published yesterday by the New York Post.
Yet, while the Silicon Valley tech-giant continues to flirt with entertainment industry heavyweights, it’s longer-term goals in the digital content space are still uncertain — even though we get a gist of what the company might be up to based on recent developments.
For starters, Apple is slated to produce an abundance of original TV content, which will reportedly be exclusive to either Apple TV or Apple Music, and should even begin to grace living rooms and Apple Music subscribers, respectively, as early as this year. Such ambitions, according to The Wall Street Journal, include a spin-off of Carpool Karaoke — a popular segment from The Late Late Show starring James Corden — which the company acquired the rights to, and plans to refresh into as many as 16, half-hour long episodes that will debut exclusively on Apple Music later on this fall.
Similarly, Apple’s forthcoming reality TV series, Planet of the Apps, is slated to begin airing exclusively on Apple TV beginning this spring, and will be premised around a modified theme of ABC’s popular ‘Shark Tank’ series — except that app developers, as entrepreneurs, will instead compete for venture capital, while dichotomously receiving guidance and mentorship from Hollywood big-wigs like Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Alba, and will.i.am, among others.
Despite these developments, however, and Apple’s apparent interest in courting Hollywood hot-shots, Cue made it quite clear that his company has no business interests in creating TV shows.
“We’re not in the business of trying to create TV shows,” Cue asserted, while also cautioning that “If we see it being complementary to the things we’re doing at Apple Music or if we see it being something that’s innovative on our platform, we may help them and guide them and make suggestions. But we’re not trying to compete with Netflix or compete with Comcast.”
Cue’s sentiments would seem to converge with those of Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, who during Apple’s most recent conference call, specified that “In terms of original content, we’ve put our toe in the water doing some original content for Apple Music, and that will be rolling out throughout the year.”
So while Apple’s interest in acquiring Netflix, or directly competing with streaming providers of the like, seem to have been taken off the stove, it appears there’s still plenty in store for those who were hoping the company would deliver something new to help revolutionize TV.