Apple Met Paramount and Sony Executives Last Week as it Flirts With Original Content

Apple senior executive Eddy Cue, who oversees services such as iTunes and Apple Music, held discussions last week with Paramount Pictures and Sony Pictures, two of the biggest film studios in Hollywood, according to the New York Post, but the iPhone maker's exact ambitions in the content space are still uncertain.


The report suggested Apple is looking for a "transformative acquisition" and "not just a deal to buy TV shows," while an unnamed source is quoted as vaguely saying Apple is "preparing something big."

Apple has so far only flirted with original content, which it plans to distribute through Apple Music starting later this year.

It acquired the rights to Carpool Karaoke, for example, the popular segment from The Late Late Show with James Corden, which it plans to reboot as a series of sixteen half-hour episodes on Apple Music. The trailer for the show revealed it has a similar format of celebrity pairings singing along while driving.

Likewise, Apple's upcoming reality TV series Planet of the Apps will be released on a weekly basis in the Spring. On the show, hosted by Beats 1 radio host Zane Lowe, app developers compete for venture capital while receiving mentorship from influencers Gary Vaynerchuk, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Alba, and will.i.am.

Apple has sent mixed signals to Hollywood about its interest in original programming over the past few years, according to The Information.

Last year, it said Apple has met with film studios and producers about developing original TV shows to offer exclusively on iTunes, but Cue later said Apple is "not in the business of trying to create TV shows." Instead, he said Apple is willing to offer producers suggestions and guidance where possible.

We're not in the business of trying to create TV shows. If we see it being complementary to the things we're doing at Apple Music or if we see it being something that's innovative on our platform, we may help them and guide them and make suggestions. But we're not trying to compete with Netflix or compete with Comcast.

The report added that Apple is not interested in getting into expensive bidding wars over content with rivals such as Netflix and Amazon.

The Wall Street Journal recently said Apple plans to "build a significant new business in original television shows and movies," which it compared to the likes of HBO's Westworld and Netflix's Stranger Things. It agreed that Apple is not looking to compete with Netflix, but rather promote Apple Music.

"In terms of original content, we've put our toe in the water doing some original content for Apple Music, and that will be rolling out throughout the year," said Tim Cook, Apple's CEO, on a conference call following the company's most recent earnings results. "We're learning from that and we'll go from there."

Reports outlining Apple's interest in original content have gained momentum over the past few years alongside the iPhone maker's much rumored but since shelved plans for a streaming TV service in the United States.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
47 months ago
Instead of original content, what about original Macs Apple?
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
47 months ago
Maybe I'm cynical, but my first thought is, "Please, Apple, just build great software and hardware and let the companies that are already good at this continue to produce content."
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
47 months ago
Is this something Apple really wants to do and is passionate about, or is this something apple feels they need to get into just because of competition?
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
47 months ago

Eddy Cue...

Is often hated on for his keynote skills.
But I honestly think he is one of Apple's best executives.

True hustler.

I actually miss him in the keynotes.
Say what you want but these new presenters like the Apple Pay VP lack personality. It just feels so artificial.

Eddy always livened up the place.

Eddy - is that you?
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
47 months ago
Eddy Cue...

Is often hated on for his keynote skills.
But I honestly think he is one of Apple's best executives.

True hustler.

I actually miss him in the keynotes.
Say what you want but these new presenters like the Apple Pay VP lack personality. It just feels so artificial.

Eddy always livened up the place.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
47 months ago
What has he delivered on, in the last five years, that you would even remotely consider him to be a best executive?

Eddy Cue...

Is often hated on for his keynote skills.
But I honestly think he is one of Apple's best executives.

True hustler.

I actually miss him in the keynotes.
Say what you want but these new presenters like the Apple Pay VP lack personality. It just feels so artificial.

Eddy always livened up the place.

Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Leaker: 'iPhone 12 mini' and iPhone 12 Storage Capacities Start at 64GB, Pro Models at 128GB

Tuesday September 29, 2020 2:31 am PDT by
Rumors suggest Apple's iPhone 12 launch event will be held on October 13, with the more affordable 5.4 and 6.1-inch devices set to ship out ahead of the more expensive 6.1-inch and 6.7-inch Pro devices, and this morning hit-and-miss leaker Jon Prosser has further committed to that date by providing alleged details on Apple's first shipment of finalized iPhone 12 units. Prosser claims the...

Hands-On With iOS 14.2's New Shazam Music Recognition Toggle in Control Center

Monday September 28, 2020 2:35 pm PDT by
Shortly after launching iOS 14, Apple introduced an upcoming iOS 14.2 update, which is now available to developers and public beta testers ahead of a public release that could come at some point in October. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. The iOS 14.2 update mainly focuses on the Control Center, introducing a new Music Recognition toggle that deepens the Shazam...

iPhone 12 'Pro Max' Model to Sport Unique High-End Features

Wednesday September 30, 2020 2:01 am PDT by
The upcoming "iPhone 12 Pro Max" is anticipated to have a number of unique high-end features not found on any other iPhone, such as its screen size, LiDAR scanner, faster 5G, and potentially a higher display refresh rate. The iPhone 12 Pro Max is also expected to be the largest ever iPhone, with a 6.7-inch display. Previously, the largest iPhones have been 6.5-inches in the iPhone XS Max and ...

DigiTimes: 12.9-inch Mini-LED iPad Pro Arriving Early 2021, Mini-LED MacBook Coming Later

Tuesday September 29, 2020 4:18 am PDT by
Apple will launch a 12.9-inch mini LED-backlit iPad Pro in early 2021 and a mini LED-backlit MacBook in the second-half of next year, according to DigiTimes. The Taiwan-based industry publication claims Epistar will supply the over-10,000 mini LEDs used in each iPad Pro tablet. Meanwhile, Apple is expected to recruit Osram Opto as another supplier of mini LEDs for use in a new "high-end"...

iOS 14.2 Suggests Apple Won't Include EarPods in the Box With iPhone 12

Tuesday September 29, 2020 2:19 pm PDT by
Rumors have suggested that Apple's iPhone 12 models will not include power adapters or EarPods in the box, and a minor code tweak in iOS 14.2 seemingly confirms Apple's plan to sell the new devices without EarPods. In iOS 14 and earlier versions of iOS, there's a mention of reducing exposure to RF energy by using the "supplied headphones," which is the same wording that Apple has used for...

iPhone 12 Production Lines at Foxconn's Zhengzhou Factory in China Running '24 Hours a Day'

Tuesday September 29, 2020 3:38 am PDT by
Apple contract manufacturer Foxconn is running its massive Zhengzhou factory in China 24 hours a day to produce the new iPhone 12, according to Chinese media reports. Apple's main iPhone manufacturer in China is said to be cancelling workers' holidays and introducing mandatory overtime with additional bonuses for longer-serving staff, according to information garnered from employees,...

iPhone 12 May Launch Earlier Than Usual in South Korea

Monday September 28, 2020 5:24 am PDT by
The upcoming iPhone 12 lineup may launch earlier than usual in South Korea, reports The Korea Herald. South Korean telecoms firms speaking to The Korea Herald have said that the iPhone 12 lineup will launch ahead of its usual schedule. Normally, the release of new iPhones in South Korea comes about one month after launch in the United States. Last year, the iPhone 11 arrived in South Korea ...

iOS 14.2 Beta 2 Adds New Emoji Characters like Ninja, Pinata, Bubble Tea, Polar Bear and More

Tuesday September 29, 2020 11:22 am PDT by
The second beta of iOS 14.2 introduces the new Emoji 13 characters that Apple previewed earlier this year as part of World Emoji Day. New emoji options include ninja, people hugging, black cat, bison, fly, polar bear, blueberries, fondue, bubble tea, and more, with a list below. Faces - Smiling Face with Tear, Disguised Face People - Ninja, Person in Tuxedo, Woman in Tuxedo, Person...

Epic Games Unlikely to Win Injunction in Ongoing Fortnite Battle With Apple, Jury Trial Possible

Monday September 28, 2020 1:14 pm PDT by
The ongoing legal dispute between Apple and Epic Games continued on today, with a preliminary injunction hearing taking place this morning. We're still waiting to hear the judge's official ruling, but it looks like Epic is not going to be granted an injunction to allow Fortnite back into the App Store as the case unfolds. Many of the arguments that lawyers for Apple and Epic Games made were...

Apple Releases Ninth Beta of macOS Big Sur to Developers

Tuesday September 29, 2020 10:07 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the Ninth beta of an upcoming macOS Big Sur update to developers for testing purposes, a week after releasing the eighth beta and more than two months after the new update was unveiled at the Worldwide Developers Conference. The macOS Big Sur beta can be downloaded through the Apple Developer Center and once the appropriate profile is installed, subsequent betas will be...