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Apple aims to launch TV service in 100+ countries, US debut expected in 1H 2019

Apple's rumored TV subscription service will premiere in the U.S. in the first half of 2019, and reach over 100 countries by the end of the year, a report claimed on Tuesday.

Apple is beginning to talk with programmers about what it's willing to pay to carry shows and movies, sources told The Information. As expected, original Apple shows should be free, but people will be able to pay for subscriptions to third-party networks. Content should vary from country to country, reflecting the complicated licensing landscape — HBO for example licenses it shows to services like Sky in the U.K.

Some media companies are allegedly concerned about how their content will be presented alongside Apple's. That may be warranted, as on the Apple TV for example services like iTunes are front-and-center, forcing people to go to the App Store to access options like Prime Video.

A recent CNBC report claimed that Apple may ultimately launch its own paid Netflix-style service, but that it's looking to find "tent pole" shows that could draw in viewers. Much of the success of Netflix has been linked to original hits like "Daredevil" and "Stranger Things."

Some critics are already concerned about Apple's chances, as the company is reportedly going for "family-friendly" content that might have a hard time luring people away from shows like "Game of Thrones" and "Good Omens."

Some of Apple's upcoming shows include a morning show drama with Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Aniston, and Steve Carell, and an adaption of Isaac Asimov's famous "Foundation" novels.