An Update on the Streaming Service Wars

On one side of the room, Warner Media, the new corporate owner of AT&T’s entertainment properties – that’s HBO, Turner networks, Warner Bros. studio – wants us to pay even more money for programming via yet another new streaming service, set to launch in 2019.

And on the other end, a refreshing change from Apple. Citing unnamed sources, CNBC says the iconic iPhone maker looks to offer its ambitious new slate of entertainment for free, as a TV app, that can be watched by owners of the iPhone, iPad and the Apple TV set-top box.

Apple has enlisted heavy-hitters for its new entertainment programming, including Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston to star in and/or produce TV shows for the new, unnamed service.

Apple didn’t respond to our requests for comment.

Gene Munster, an analyst and investor with Loup Ventures said he thinks Apple’s decision to give away the content is smart because it can quickly establish Apple in the space to its 1 billion plus customers, which is way larger than Netflix’s 130 million subscribers.

It could help Apple “build a loyal viewer base,” from which to sell Apple customers on other paid options.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Jefferson Graham