Apple May Emulate Netflix And Refuse Ad-Supported Content

When you think about advertising, privacy of consumer data is always an issue.

Apple now stands with those that believe privacy is a key issue. It's even airing a TV spot claiming so.

In a world where media disruption has many taking sides, you can see where this is going. Look for Netflix and in the future, Apple on one side -- with traditional media companies, NBCUniversal, CBS, Facebook, and Twitter, on the other.

“Brand safety” is the irksome factor in all of this.

Many ad-supported digital video platforms, including YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, have been dinged by laxity. But the last two -- Facebook and Twitter -- have also been exposed to privacy concerns by consumers. Advertising and the potential for selling consumer data to outside marketing companies is an ongoing concern.

While traditional media companies haven't been hurt by privacy issues on their respective TV platforms, many will be moving closer when it comes to data-driven media businesses.



For years, Apple has been toying with the idea of expanding its business into the media space. But not totally. It is estimated to spend some $4.2 billion on original programming in three years -- shows appearing on existing platforms, as well as a new streaming service.

Reports say Apple’s forthcoming product will offer access to original content and other SVOD services. Some original content from Apple will reportedly be free and housed in the “TV” app, preinstalled on iOS devices like iPhones. Users can subscribe to other programmers like Starz from within the app.

But ad-supported content from Apple? Nope. Seems Apple is content to stay on the “Netflix-like” service of things. No advertising -- just paid consumer subscription. And, yes -- Netflix does know a lot about its subscribers, and Apple as well.

By contrast, NBCUniversal and WarnerMedia are putting new ad-supported services front and center. These media companies would seemingly assure consumers that any data collected will be kept private, or at best, “anomymized.”

The big question: Will this alleviate concerns that consumers and business analysts have that traditional TV companies can make a smooth transition to digital media?

1 comment about "Apple May Emulate Netflix And Refuse Ad-Supported Content".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, March 19, 2019 at 9:41 a.m.

    Interesting, Wayne, and it's certainly a possibility that Apple will start out following the Netflix no-ads dictate. But some of us figure that it's only a matter of time before Netflix---despite what it has said----offers an ad-supported option in order to deal with its mounting mountain of debt, Then what? Another round of disruption---I guess.

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