You may have wondered why do so many movie trailers premiere on Apple.com. Chad Little, a former Apple.com employee has posted a public response to this question. The answer? Blame it on Jar Jar Binks and Star Wars Episode 1 The Phantom Menace….
Little wrote on Quora.com:
It started as a showcase for QuickTime, at the time of first launch we only had a handful of trailers and one or two studios. It was really the Phantom Menace trailer that put apple.com/trailers into the spotlight. Lucasfilm had posted a rather crappy trailer on their site, the team at Apple was appalled. Through DNS records, the web team at Apple managed to contact the Star Wars web team and set up a meeting. That single trailer showcased QuickTime’s quality over RealVideo by leaps and bounds, and quickly surpassed over 1 million downloads to become the most popular web video of the internet in that time. But that wasn’t the end of it. There was another problem delivering all these trailers at high bandwidth. Enter Akamai. Hosting the Star Wars trailer on this little known startup called Akamai gave Apple the edge in delivery and quality of high bandwidth video. Streaming sites just couldn’t compete. Through these connections studios began sending trailers left and right, and Apple was at the launch of many successful trailer premieres from Lord of the Rings, X-Men, even now with the latest Iron Man 2 Trailer. They don’t pay for content rights, but do host and pay for bandwidth.
So there you have it: Apple and Quicktime profit in the branding department.