Late to the party once again, 2017 is apparently the year we will begin to witness original visual content launched by Apple and Apple TV.
Whilst it remains to be seen how Apple will position this new proposition in a distinctive and differentiating way versus extensive competition, it is clear that simply offering another on-demand streaming service will not be a unique option.
Netflix, Spotify and a range of other subscription based services all enjoyed the benefits of the monthly payment model from origin, whilst iTunes were resolute in retaining their ad hoc purchase model, until just over 18 months ago with the launch of Apple Music. Their hinted at foray into new content follows the success Netflix and Amazon have found through releasing their own original series and movies, with cult favourites Stranger Things, House of Cards and The Grand Tour already impacting consumer viewing through binge-ready uploads.
Apple’s acquisition of ‘Carpool Karaoke’ last July was one of a number of developments by the tech giant, hinting at a move into original content creation beyond purely facilitating download and rent of other studios’ work through their iTunes model.
Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook has promised there are more things to come from Apple TV this year, securing this position as a key player in the changing media industry. Whilst it is still uncertain whether they will focus on long or short-form content, it is clear that Apple have acknowledged the changing market needs, looking outside of their own innovative ecosystem to play catch-up and compete in other areas.
Not only will Apple be competing against key new media players Netflix and Amazon, long-entrenched media houses and studios have also begun moving into the world of streaming and downloadable content, such as Disney’s subscription proposition DisneyLife. One thing that we believe is certain, however, is that to succeed in this venture Apple will need to ensure that their new proposition has a clear benefit for consumers, is distinctive enough to stand apart from competitors, and adheres to the emotional connection that so many feel with the brand.
If merely offering a subscription model and own-brand original content is solely a point of parity in the evolving media market, how will Apple differentiate and make their original content truly original?