Apple is taking on Amazon and Netflix in the video streaming wars with its new Apple TV+ streaming service that will launch later in 2019.
Apple TV+ will give users access to a bunch of new drama series, films and documentaries currently in development and in production, in partnership with marquee banner-names ranging from Oprah Winfrey and Jennifer Aniston to Steven Spielberg, J.J. Abrams and M. Night Shyamalan.
As was expected from Apple’s “Show Time” media announcement it made Monday evening in its Steve Jobs Theatre at its Apple Park headquarters in Cupertino, California and streamed worldwide, Apple is entering the subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) market to compete against the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime Video with its own roster of high-quality original TV and film content.
Apple is upgrading its Apple TV app that will include Apple TV Channels and that will start in May 2019 in more than 130 countries, with Apple that will announce the pricing of its Apple TV+ pay-TV service later in the year.
Apple TV+ bosses Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg said that users will be able to stream watch shows or download them, entirely ad-free, with more content that will be added monthly.
Apple has already spent more than $1 billion to produce over 20 drama series and comedies, as well as films and documentaries to create its first-ever slate of Apple Originals, with more on its way.
“Our vision for the Apple TV app is to bring together your favourite shows, movies, sports and news and make them available on all of your devices,” Tim Cook, Apple CEO, said.
Apple played both a black-and-white vignette of all the stars, producers, writers and directors talking about the creative process(above), as well as a short sizzle-reel teasing some of its upcoming content (below).
Steven Spielberg is the executive producer of a new reboot of his former science fiction anthology series for Apple, Amazing Stories.
Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon and Steve Carell will star in The Morning Show, a backstage drama series following the behind-the-scenes conflict at an American breakfast show, with the show that has a two-season 20-episode order.
Jason Momoa and Alfre Woodard have starring roles in the 10-episode See, a science fiction drama series set hundreds of years in the future where what’s left of mankind lost the sense of sight and only a few people who still believe that mankind once had the ability to see with their eyes.
Kumail Nanjiani is doing an anthology series Little America about immigrants.
Oprah Winfrey took to the Apple stage at the end, announcing two documentary projects, as well as a plan for an Apple-Oprah book club, saying she decided to team up with Apple TV+ “because they’re in a billion pockets y’all”.
“The Apple platform allows me to do what I do in a whole new way – to take everything I’ve learned about connecting to people to the next level. Because they’re in a billion pockets y’all,” said Oprah.
“The whole world has them in their hands and that presents a major opportunity to make a major impact. I’m proud and honoured to be part of this platform. My intention is to illuminate consciousness and create greater awareness with leaders, artists and newsmakers.”
Oprah’s Book Club returns
Oprah Winfrey also plans to relaunch and return her Book Club made famous by her TV talk show.
“I want to convene a meeting of the mind connecting us through books. For me there is nothing more thrilling than being transported by a brilliant book.”
“The only other thing more gratifying than an extraordinary read is being able to share that experience with others, and we’re going to do just that by building the biggest, the most vibrant, the most stimulating Book Club on the planet!” Oprah Winfrey exclaimed.
“Imagine where Apple stores stream a conversation with the author and me, live across all devices, across all borders, uniting people to stories that remind us that no matter who you are, or where you are from, every man, woman and child looks up in awe at the same stuff.”
“For as long as I remember, I had this dream for us all to someday realize that deep potential that we’re all each born to, abides in every soul; I know this to be true.”
“My deepest hope is that we all, humans, get to be the fullest version of ourselves as human being, to join in the mission and vision for our common good, to leave this world more enlightened, kinder and better than we found it, and to move together one billion-plus strong into a future of our own design, all connected through Apple!”