Apple Seeking Programming Chief to Lead Video Efforts

Apple is looking for a programming chief, suggesting the company is serious about delving further into original programming, reports The Information.

In its search to find someone to lead its video efforts, Apple is said to have met with former HBO president and programming lead Michael Lombardo earlier this year to "discuss Apple's video programming strategy." Lombardo left his high-profile role as HBO president in early 2016 to become a producer because he wanted a more active creative role.

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Lombardo is currently producing a show for HBO, but given his meeting with Apple, it's possible the company is considering him for the head programming role. Apple is said to be actively seeking to fill the position, which could answer some questions Hollywood has about the company's video plans.

While the company has taken on a few projects like reality competition show "Planet of the Apps" and the "Carpool Karaoke" series, many in Hollywood have been flummoxed by what exactly Apple wants to do with video. Questions include how far Apple wants to go in making its own shows and whether it wants to compete with Netflix, Amazon and Hulu.

Apple CEO Tim Cook in January said that Apple has a "toe in the water" testing original television programming, so it's possible Apple itself doesn't yet know how far it wants to go with original content. In early May, Cook said in an interview that Apple is experimenting with original content and learning from that experience. "We're learning and we'll see where this takes us," he said.

Apple has several original television programs in the works, including "Carpool Karaoke," "Planet of the Apps," and "Vital Signs," with the two former shows having already been announced, but none of the content has debuted as of yet.

Apple is planning to use the television shows to promote its Apple Music service, with Apple iTunes chief Eddy Cue saying Apple is not aiming to compete with Netflix, but there have been hints suggesting the company's content ambitions could perhaps run deeper than simple Apple Music promotion.

January rumors indicated Apple was building a "significant" business around original television shows with plans to launch content in the vein of HBO's "Westworld" and Netflix's "Stranger Things," and in February, Eddy Cue reportedly met with execs from Paramount Pictures and Sony Pictures in pursuit of a "transformative acquisition."

Apple's television plans have, however, fallen through so many times over the years due to negotiation difficulties that it's unclear how original content will pan out.

Related Roundup: Apple TV
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Caution)

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Top Rated Comments

Santabean2000 Avatar
93 months ago
The market is becoming even more fragmented than ever. Luckily I don't watch enough tv to care :D
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
B.K. Avatar
93 months ago
Less programming and more programming please!
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ndpitch Avatar
93 months ago
Apple needs to stop trying to do too much. Simply focus on the products that made you great. I want an awesome Macbook Pro, not a TV show.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
HobeSoundDarryl Avatar
93 months ago
Oh com'on man... clearly a show about nerds & apps is a far superior place to focus effort than new Mac computers:eek:

Read through these threads around here: hardly anyone wants updated Macs but everyone is buzzing about Planet of the Apps & similar. ;)
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bdkennedy1 Avatar
93 months ago
Well, I'm no programming chief. But Apple could start off by not creating stupid ****. Stick to the hardware. Thanks.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dilster3k Avatar
93 months ago
Oh Spotify is streaming music... Gotta do that.
Oh Tesla is making electric AI driven cars... Gotta do that.
Oh Amazon & Google are making home voice driven hubs... Gotta do that
Oh Netflix & Amazon are producing original content... Gotta do that

Yo, like stop.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)