Connolly’s hire by the tech giant was first reported by the Telegraph, which cited an update to his LinkedIn profile that says he recently joined the Apple “video business” based in L.A. The assumption is that Connolly is working on the Apple TV Plus subscription-video product, at a time when Apple is reportedly looking to introduce more bundles for the product. An Apple rep did not respond to a request for comment.
Last month, Apple TV Plus (regularly $4.99/month) launched its first bundle, which gives U.S. subscribers the ability to add ViacomCBS’s CBS All Access and Showtime together for $9.99 per month — a 52% discount compared with buying them separately. Apple is prepping the launch of new discounted services bundles, with Apple TV Plus and Apple Music in the baseline tier, along with new iPhones as soon as October, per a Bloomberg report.
Connolly left Quibi last summer after about a year at Jeffrey Katzenberg’s mobile-video startup when his position was eliminated in a reorg, per a source familiar with the company. At Quibi, he had been in charge of business relationships with all partners including subscriber-acquisition partners (such app stores, mobile operators and music services); advertisers and agencies; tech partners; and promotional partners.
Before Quibi, Connolly was senior VP and head of partnerships and distribution at Hulu. He left that post in the summer of 2018 as part of a reorganization at the streamer. Prior to joining Hulu in 2014, he worked at Disney heading up digital distribution initiatives for TV, including managing content licensing and distribution efforts for ABC, ABC Family, Disney Channel and ESPN.
Before Disney, Connolly spent seven years at telecom equipment vendor Ericsson, where he most recently oversaw the hardware, software, project management and services businesses for the company’s partnerships with AT&T and T-Mobile.