Report: Apple considering move into original programming

After going head-to-head with Spotify in streaming music, Apple is considering taking on the likes of Netflix and Amazon in the original programming business, Variety reports. One high-level Hollywood executive who had talks with the company said Apple is looking to start its own development and production divisions to create long-form content for streaming. The source didn’t know whether the focus would be on TV series, movies or both, but said the company is looking to start hiring in the next few months with hopes of the new venture being operational next year. Other sources claimed Apple’s interest in creating its own content is still in a much more preliminary stage, but the company is said to have made a bid to secure the stars of “Top Gear” after they left their BBC show earlier this year — only to lose the show to Amazon in July. Apple has been buying up content on the independent film circuit for distribution on iTunes for years, and has made a big push to incorporate local content into its upcoming paid subscription TV service to set it apart from competitors’ offerings. While starting its own in-house production company could be expensive, Apple holds more than $200 billion in cash and has proven with Apple Music that the company is willing to enter a new market with original, exclusive content. Apple declined to comment on the story.