Apparently, in bankrolling a new original TV series starring Dr. Dre, Apple isn’t getting into content creation so much as content marketing.
‘To extend Apple Music’
Late last week, news broke that the Cupertino-based tech giant had green-lighted a new scripted TV series top-billed by the popular American rapper, “Straight Outta Compton” producer and Beats cofounder. Speculations then abounded that, failing a viable entry point in the TV bundling business, the company had resorted to TV show production instead.
But according to a new report by Re/code, Apple’s move is more of a marketing maneuver for its music streaming service than a serious dive into the content creation business. “Apple has already been financing video content it uses to market Apple Music — ‘to extend Apple Music,’ in the words of an insider,” the site notes. “And it’s doing that with the Dre show. Full stop.”
Apple had previously financed Taylor Swift’s “1989 World Tour Live” concert documentary, which has been exclusively available on Apple Music since its release in December. And as it turned out, Apple didn’t just pay Drake to release the Canadian rapper’s meme-tastic “Hotline Bling” in October — it financed it as well.
And now, here comes Apple Music’s next promotional show, Dr. Dre’s TV series.
Titled “Vital Signs,” the series is a semiautobiographical drama consisting of six half-hour episodes, “with each episode, focusing on a different emotion and how Dre’s character deals with it,” according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Said to have “no shortage of violence and sex,” the series, which is expected to be distributed through Apple Music later this year, isn’t something you’d expect to come from Apple. Be that as it may, it should be no wonder why the company would go with Dr. Dre: He joined the company when Apple purchased Beats for $3 billion in 2014.
Much of the technology behind Beats’s now defunct music streaming service powers Apple Music. According to Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, Apple Music has attracted 11 million subscribers since its launch in late June. Still, Apple Music could use a significant marketing boost as it competes with Spotify and other music streaming services.