Friday, July 1, 2016

Apple Should Not Buy Tidal

Subscription content services are a nice business to own.  They provide a nice monthly stream of revenue that can be accounted for with limited risks in subscriber loss.  Heck even cable has seen a very small percentage still from cord cutting.  In music, the big player is Spotify and Apple Music would surely like to beat them.  But recent news that they might purchase Tidal is not the answer.  Sure it has Jay Z but that does not a business make.  And it certainly won't make Apple Music any better or bigger.  Whether it secures any exclusivity is questionable, especially when you consider what Apple may have learned from the book side of the business and dealing with both book publishers and eventially the Judicial Department.

Still, the strategy of building better content businesses is a good one for Apple.  Could that mean buying someone as big as Netflix or perhaps even a Time Warner Inc, home of Turner, HBO, and Warner Bros?  I would love that move.  But maybe something smaller is a better first step.  Given the Viacom issues and Sumner Redstone lunacy, Showtime and sister networks might be a better idea.  Lionsgate is picking up Starz; once owned, they could be in play too.  And let's not forget Scripps or AMC.  Overall, I believe that video subscription should be Apple's next big content move.

And as for SIRI and the Amazon Alexa competition.  That is a blog for another time.