Apple took a baby step into original video this week. We discuss how unimpressive this, and all of Apple’s video efforts, have been. On the other hand, Facebook continues to explore ways to increase its video dominance. Now it is coming to television with a native video app for connected TVs.
Chapter 1: Apple inches into original video (1:30)
Will discusses a presentation by Apple’s SVP of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue, at the Code Media conference this week. He discusses the two new shows Apple announced that are destined for inclusion in Apple Music. One, Planet of the Apps, seems a poor fit for the subscription service. The other, a spin James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke, seems a better fit. We both agree, however, that the effort is underwhelming.
Chapter 2: Apple failing to make the grade in online video (5:30)
I am mystified why Apple isn’t more focused on video, as it such an enormous market. The company remains focused on video rentals and sales. However, Amazon has come to dominate that market over the last 4 years. As well, Apple is totally absent from the much bigger and faster growing SVOD market.
As well, the excuse that the company just can’t license good content to launch an online video subscription service is starting to wear thin. Even tiny startup fuboTV has been able to put together a credible virtual MVPD package.
Chapter 3: Mobile is becoming an important video platform (12:00)
A key strength of Apple is its dominance in mobile devices. However, it is the mobile operators that have seized the mobile video initiative, not Apple. They are reintroducing unlimited data plans, zero rating video services, and delivering exclusive video on their networks.
Again, Apple simply isn’t addressing the mobile video market beyond the iTunes store.
Chapter 4: Facebook bulks up its video footprint (13:20)
This week Facebook announced three new video features of its service:
1. Video a persons feed will now play with sound on by default
2. There are new enhancements for people watching video on their device in a vertical orientation
3. A new video app for TV connected devices
Will thinks that the TV app will allow Facebook to begin including pre-roll ads. The company has resisted doing this through the standard feed interface. I wonder what the TV experience will be like. The videos in Facebook work well when scrolling through a feed, but will they command enough attention through the television?
Both of us think professional video is an essential component of the Facebook video experience. Yet the company still has not come up with a way for premium providers to monetize their efforts on the platform.