Life Tech ‘It’s show time’: Apple to battle Netflix for streaming supremacy
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‘It’s show time’: Apple to battle Netflix for streaming supremacy

Apple is set to challenge Netflix, with its own streaming service expected to launch later this month. Photo: Getty/TND
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The rumour-mill is whirring before the expected unveiling of Apple’s new online streaming service later this month.

Apple tantalised its legions of fans on Tuesday, dropping what has become a trademark teaser-style video to confirm a mysterious event at its headquarters at Cupertino, California on March 25.

As is customary for the secretive tech giant, the brief video – included in an event invitation to journalists – gave away few details about the highly anticipated event.

It consisted simply of a black-and-white film countdown leader followed by the company’s logo and the phrase “It’s show time”.

The company last used the phrase in 2006 in the lead-up to the launch of Apple TV, Buzzfeed tech editor John Paczkowski reported.

Apple is the latest corporate giant seeking to challenge Netflix’s dominance of online internet film and television streaming, following Amazon and Disney’s moves into the space.

According to unconfirmed media reports, Apple’s streaming service is set to include:

  • Original television series available on both Apple’s own and rival streaming services
  • Some free original content available to iOS users via Apple’s pre-installed TV app

Apple is also reportedly gearing up to launch a pair of augmented reality (AR) glasses, which could hit shelves as soon as 2020.

The battle for streaming supremacy

Disney has started pulling hits, such as Marvel’s Black Panther, from Netflix. Photo: YouTube

The news follows revelations that Disney will enter the online streaming race later this year, with a platform titled Disney+.

The entertainment behemoth, which is the parent company of superhero storytellers Marvel, has already begun quietly pulling its smash box-office content from rival Netflix.

In Australia, Nine Entertainment-owned streaming company Stan picked up the rights to Disney’s content from December 14, with access to a massive back catalogue of Disney-owned classics, (Finding Nemo, Frozen, The Lion King, Cars) as well as Marvel and Star Wars content.

In announcing the move, there was no mention of Disney+ on the horizon, and a Stan spokesperson declined to say whether any new, original Disney content would be available on the platform in the future.

Other paid streaming services available to customers in Australia include Amazon’s Prime Video, Nine Entertainment-owned Stan, as well as free services such as ABC’s iView and SBS’s OnDemand.

‘Tim Apple’: CEO at the centre of Trump Twitterstorm

In addition to the hype around its upcoming streaming service, Apple made headlines around the world for more bizarre reasons this week, with chief executive Tim Cook finding himself at the centre of US President Donald Trump’s latest Twitter controversy.

Mr Trump appeared not to know the name of Steve Jobs’ successor at a White House event last week, introducing Mr Cook as “Tim Apple”.

A clip of the gaffe quickly went viral:

In a subtle wink at Mr Trump’s viral gaffe, the Apple boss replaced his surname with an apple logo on Twitter to reflect the new moniker.

In response to online mockery of his latest gaffe, Mr Trump doubled down, claiming that the he had referred to Mr Cook as “Tim Apple” in order to “save time [and] words”.

A screenshot of Tim Cook's Twitter account.
Apple chief Tim Cook changed his name to Tim  following the event. Photo: Twitter

“At a recent round table meeting of business executives, & long after formally introducing Tim Cook of Apple, I quickly referred to Tim + Apple as Tim/Apple as an easy way to save time & words,” the President tweeted.

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