Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) is attempting to gain an edge in the hotly competitive segment of streaming video. The tech giant plans to introduce augmented reality (AR) elements into its Apple TV+ service, according to "people familiar with the project" who were cited in a report published by Bloomberg.
Such content would serve as bonus features for Apple's offerings on the streaming service, which include a small but growing slate of TV series and films.
The article's sources say that Apple will roll out the AR enhancements to TV+ in 2021, in front of an expected launch of an Apple headset the following year. That headset is apparently intended to deliver both virtual reality (VR) and AR content. Before the spread of the coronavirus, the company had planned to roll out its streaming video AR extras this year.
Streaming video has become a very crowded field, with well-established content producers such as Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX), traditional media companies like ViacomCBS (NASDAQ: VIAC), and well-capitalized upstarts such as Apple TV+ jostling for share. While content is the main draw, streaming services are also eager to find attractive extras and novel features that will give them an edge over the competition.
Apple TV+ was rolled out with much fanfare last November to over 100 countries. At $4.99 per month, it's inexpensive compared to some of its peers. Many subscribers access the service for $0, as the company provides a one-year subscription for free as a perk for buying one of its devices.
Apple declined to comment on the Bloomberg story.
The company's stock dipped by 1.2% on Thursday, in contrast to the gains posted by the broader equity market.
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