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Published on October 10th, 2018 | by Brad Gibson


CNBC: Apple to revamp its TV plans with free original content

Apple is creating a new digital video service that will include its own original content together with subscription “channels” from various media companies, some of it for free, CNBC reported Wednesday.

Sources report the subscription channel concept will provide Apple-owned and created content for free to customers who own devices like the iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV. In addition, users will be able to access content from other services like HBO, Starz, AMC and more within a TV app rather than needing to download and log into individual apps, much like how Amazon Prime Video now distributes content on Amazon Fire TV.

Sources said Apple is planning on launching the re-designed digital TV strategy in early 2019. 

Apple currently has in production more than 15 original television shows. Rumors have suggested Apple is spending $1 billion on original content in 2018, and according to CNBC‘s sources, “Apple is also looking for “tent pole” franchises that could serve as linchpins to a paid Netflix-like subscription service down the road,” according to sources.

The CNBC account is not the first to report Apple’s plans to expand its content and the distribution of third-party programming. Bloomberg reported earlier this year that Apple would upgrade its TV app with subscription features, but Wednesday’s report includes details of Apple adding its own original content as part of that strategy at no additional cost.

CNBC is also reporting Apple is working to convince print media executives to join Texture, the magazine subscription service that it purchased earlier this year. “News organizations are reluctant to give Apple control of the subscriber billing relationship, a struggle Apple will need to overcome to establish a full newspaper and magazine subscription service,” CNBC reported.

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About the Author

Brad is co-founder and editor-in-chief of He has been a technology reporter since the late 1980s having previously worked for MacUser, MacFormat, and iCreate magazines, as well as,,,, and He hosted and produced the MacFormat This Week podcast for three years. He was also a reporter, editor, and producer for the AOL, the BBC, Associated Press, and United Press International.

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