Apple's video streaming service could launch without Netflix and HBO content

Apple’s long-rumored video content streaming service could launch as early as April – and without either Netflix or HBO – CNBC reports.

Apple is reportedly looking to launch its video streaming service this April or early May, CNBC learned from “people familiar with the matter.” It will include original content available for free on Apple devices but will also have a number of streaming service ‘Channels.’

These Channels will include options to access subscriptions to other services, which so far include Starz, CBS and Viacom, per CNBC’s sources. However, CNBC reports that HBO is not as far along in partnership discussions as these aforementioned networks for reasons unknown. It's unclear whether that will impact its availability on Apple's service.

Likewise, neither Netflix nor Hulu are expected to be part of Apple’s service, CNBC sources say, just as they aren’t available on Amazon’s Prime Video Channels initiative.

Every company associated with CNBC’s report has declined to comment.

Is Apple simply asking for too much?

Most reports reacting to Apple’s big doubling down into services for 2019 haven’t exactly been rosy. The lukewarm response is mainly due to the supposed terms that Apple is approaching publishers and networks with – including, unsurprisingly, Apple's cut.

CNBC reports that Apple is asking for 30% off the top from subscriptions activated through its upcoming service, which is twice as much as it does today for service sign-ups through its App Store. This lines up easily with news that publishers aren’t happy with Apple’s terms regarding its upcoming News subscription service.

We’ll see whether Apple’s lineup of original content can entice enough viewers, as launching a streaming service without Netflix or HBO behind it seems like a bold move.

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