Apple is reportedly investing $1 billion in original programming

Apple CEO Tim Cook

There are bigger plans looming ahead, however, as Apple is reportedly setting aside a budget of about $1 billion with the sole objective of producing high-end original entertainment content.

The budget figure reported by the WSJ is about half of what HBO spent previous year, and is also around the same amount of what Amazon spent in 2013 when it announced it was going to create its own original shows, as pointed out by MacRumors.

The Journal says this $1 billion could go to fund "as many as 10 television shows".


Apple's original content efforts are only getting started. Apple's SVP of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue hired former Sony Pictures Television presidents Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg to run all aspects of worldwide video programming. Apple's first original series, Planet of the Apps and Carpool Karaoke, both just became available to Apple Music subscribers, and critics' reviews have been mixed.

In recent years, Apple has begun to make noises about dipping its toe into actual production of content. The sources didn't state which shows Apple may be eyeing, nor the type of content it is considering. Unquestionably, the success of Apple Music is due to the sheer number of people that own an iPhone, and a streaming video service would enjoy a similar advantage. Earlier this year, JPMorgan estimated that Amazon would spend $4.5 billion on video in 2017, though we don't have an official number.

The news follows a few months after it was reported that Apple snagged Breaking Bad showrunners Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg to produce a now unannounced project for the tech giant. Exactly what kind of shows we might be able to expect remains to be seen, but we reckon Apple will probably need some big hitters if they're hoping to generate more interest. Now, the tech giant is reportedly planning to invest $1 billion to create original TV shows. High-end shows such as Game of Thrones cost more than $10 million per episode to produce. However, the rise of subscription services made the business less attractive, as from 50% in 2012, Apple's movie rental-and-sales market is estimated to have dropped to 35% now, notes The Verge.

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