Apple plans $1B original content investment; Taiwan blackout didn't impact suppliers


Those kinds of shows-scripted comedies and dramas-are expensive to produce, and we've seen Netflix's annual budget for original programming increase over the past few years to accommodate that.

Apple is going to spend (literally) billions to produce original movie and TV content of its own.

The budget, according to the Journal, will be overseen by Hollywood veterans Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg, both of whom moved over from Sony Pictures Television in June to join the iPhone maker's Los Angeles offices and manage all aspects of video programming. HBO spent about double last year on content (it reportedly costs $10 million to produce one episode of Game of Thrones), and Netflix may spend upwards of $6 billion this year. It is believed to be creating original, high-quality content on Apple's music streaming service or a brand new video-centered service. Reports suggest Apple is gearing up to spend $1 billion on original content during the next 12 months, as the company looks to get a footing in the Video on Demand space. Comparatively, HBO spent around $2 billion dollars on original content past year alone with rumors suggesting that it cost around $10 million dollars too produce a single episode of Game of Thrones for Season 6.

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Coupled with the hires of Cherniss, following those of Van Amburg and Erlicht, it signals a further push into TV is imminent.

Cash-rich Apple now appears set to take its foray into original content to the next level. Of course, Apple is coming into this effort years behind its competition, and there's no telling what the company's many Hollywood partners will think about Apple encroaching on their turf. The company has already dabbled in original programming with Carpool Karaoke, though it will need something with larger appeal and better ratings if it hopes to compete for viewers' limited television time. HBO, probably the most-premium of premium cable-TV networks, forked over $2 billion to pay for the acquisition and production of shows such as "Game of Thrones", "The Leftovers" and "Ballers", which stars Dwayne Johnson as a financial manager for pro football players in Miami. The WSJ has noted that Apple's share of the digital sales-and-rental market has dropped from 50 per cent in 2012 down to 35 per cent.