After what seems like an interminable wait, Apple is ready to take the covers off its video streaming service next week. Ahead of the launch, new details are emerging about the service.
One interesting new wrinkle, according to Recode, is that Apple will host and serve video streams accessed through its new service. That means Apple will get direct access to viewership data generated on its platform. It differs from how the Apple TV app currently works as an aggregation point that redirects users to corresponding apps (like Hulu and HBO Now) when they select programming to watch.
Apple’s relationship with programmers and subscription services sounds similar to what Amazon already has in place with its Prime Video Channels service.
Indeed, reports from earlier this year said that data sharing and revenue splits have been a sticking point in negotiations between Apple and some networks like HBO.
Apple’s service will reportedly be propped up by wholesale agreements with the third-party services that it will sell on its service. As Recode points out, this means Apple can set its own prices, and while that likely won’t lead to Apple undercutting its partners, it could mean Apple will offer discounted channel bundles.
For now, Apple’s original series and films will be available for free along with the subscription services, although Recode said that the company could eventually sell those shows as part of channel bundles.
Apple has lined up programming including a series about a morning TV show starring Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston. Apple has also booked a series from “La La Land” director Damien Chazelle, an “Amazing Stories” reboot from Steven Spielberg and an animated series from the creator of Fox’s “Bob’s Burgers.”
Apple may need its originals along with its discounted bundles to help push it past growing competition in the video service aggregation business. Amazon Channels is already an established competitor in the space, and this week, Comcast unveiled its own streaming video aggregation platform named Flex.