Apple has committed more than $6 billion for original shows and movies ahead of the launch of its new video streaming service, a ballooning budget aimed at catching up with the likes of Netflix, Disney and AT&T-owned HBO.
The iPhone maker has been preparing its foray into media for years, after hiring Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg, two well-known executives from Sony Pictures Television, to lead the charge in 2017.
The pair were initially armed with $1bn to commission original content over their first year but the budget has expanded and the total committed so far has passed $6bn, according to people familiar with the matter.
Unlike Netflix, which often pays content creators over several years, Apple pays earlier in the production process, once certain milestones are hit, according to people familiar with its approach.
The company’s new TV+ service will go live within the next two months, according to people briefed on its plans, in an attempt to pre-empt the launch of Disney Plus, which Disney has said it would debut in the US on November 12.
MacDailyNews Take: In it to win it.