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Apple is continuing to expand its advertising team for Apple TV+. The Information has reported that Lauren Fry, a long-time ad sales executive, has been hired to help build a video advertising business for Apple TV+.
Prior to joining Apple, Fry served as the chief revenue officer for the digital video advertising company Simulmedia and had earlier ad sales roles at AT&T and Comcast. Although it’s unclear what Fry’s title is at Apple, she will “help build a video advertising business for its Apple TV+ streaming service”.
Apple’s focus is primarily on advertising opportunities for its live sports content. The 10-year deal with Major League Soccer officially kicks off this weekend, and ahead of the MLS Season Pass launch, Insider reported that Apple was looking to expand its advertising team. Bloomberg has also reported on Apple’s goals for its advertising business, describing the focus as being on an “advertising network for live television”.
Furthermore, the company is rumored to be considering an ad-supported tier for the Apple TV+ streaming service itself. All of Apple’s major competitors in the streaming industry have introduced ad-supported plans, most recently including Disney+ and Netflix.
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Apple TV+ recently increased its price from $4.99 per month to $5.99 per month, making a cheaper tier with ads an appealing prospect to help drive viewership to Apple’s original content.
While Apple’s plans are still unknown, the hiring of Lauren Fry signals the company’s intention to broaden its role in the advertising industry. The expansion of its advertising team and the possibility of an ad-supported tier for Apple TV+ indicates that the company is focused on driving growth in its streaming service and leveraging its unique content to capture the attention of viewers.