AT a star-studded event at the company’s Cupertino headquarters in California, Apple’s current CE Tim Cook launched the Apple Plus streaming service.
There are a reported billion-plus users of Apple personal digital assistant devices throughout the world.
This is a potentially huge market for the technology company which several years ago evolved a workable business model to monetise the then notorious file-sharing technology which had been fronted by the likes of Shawn Fanning, founder of Napster.
Fanning did not cash in on his idea but rather found him mired in litigation against the major record labels such as Sony and Warner Brothers. These companies are part of the architecture of the new business of content distribution which blends technology and content creation in its lucrative value chain.
As such, the likes of Netflix have been able to construct a viable business model that is largely anchored on the super information highway of the internet.
Their merchandise is content in the form of films and television shows. In a sense, Netflix carried forward the innovation pioneered by Apple and which had been in turn been pioneered by Shawn Fanning.
Apple Plus, a streaming subscription service for content, is poised to contend for market share with others such as Netflix which already has spent billions on buying content for its platform which already has garnered over 128 million subscribers throughout the world including Africa.
What does this mean for content creators? The game is basically on for content creators who are spoilt for choice as to who to go with in the content bidding wars of the near future.
“We anticipate an avalanche of potential buyers wooing African content creators for productions. Content is king right now,” one of Zimbabwe’s leading film producers Kudzai Chikomo says.
As for the likes Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg, deals have already been inked to produce documentaries and films.
On the African terrain, Multichoice Africa recently launched its Multichoice Talent Factory portal, which is basically a directory for African film creative.
Unwittingly, the portal may also give the company’s competitors easy access to the same African creative content producers it is angling to work with.