Apple has sent out invites for its next event in Cupertino on March 25. The invite which starts with a showreel has the caption ‘It’s Showtime’, suggesting that the event could have more to do with Apple’s long-expected streaming service. Apple is also likely to announce an update to its Apple News service in “It’s Showtime” event.
Apple’s streaming and news services are both likely to be subscription-based the company pushes for more revenues from software even as hardware margins decline. Given that Apple will be offering the service to a captive users base on million of its devices, there is a high chance that these services will kick off on a high.
The video service, which is designed to rival offerings from Netflix Inc. and Amazon.com Inc., will couple Apple-developed or funded TV shows and movies with the ability to subscribe to content, Bloomberg News had reported last month.
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. Sources familiar with the matter earlier told Reuters that the service may resell subscriptions from CBS Corp, Viacom Inc and Lions Gate Entertainment Corp’s Starz among others, as well as Apple’s own original content
The TV service is expected to launch globally, 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.
The potential sales from a television service have become a focus of investors after Apple in January reported the first-ever dip in iPhone sales during the key holiday shopping period and said it would lower iPhone prices in some markets to account for foreign exchange rates.
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.
Apple’s services business is on pace to generate $50 billion per year by 2021, the company had said.
Bloomberg reported that the magazine subscription service will be a part of the existing Apple News app and powered by Texture which Apple acquired last year.
The services will roll out with iOS 12.2 update.