Prepare Content

Metadata requirements

The Apple TV app integrates subscription video services, Apple TV+, channels subscriptions, and purchased iTunes video content. This consolidated experience is powered by canonical pages, which pull in data from multiple sources and present viewers with a singular snapshot of content in all the places it’s available. The metadata you provide for your content helps to build these canonical pages. Since metadata can be provided by multiple partners for the same content, in some cases the presentation of that content on the Apple TV app may appear different than what you provided.

The UMC Catalog and Availability Data Interface Specifications details all of the metadata accepted and required for content to appear on the Apple TV app. Metadata about your content is supplied in catalog feeds, and metadata about when and where content is available is supplied in availability feeds. 

Each content item should have a unique content identifier, called a content ID, that matches both the catalog and availability feeds. The content ID must be consistent with the identifier supplied by the partner’s app via integration APIs for Video App Integrations partners or assets for Channels partners.

In addition to a content ID, Channels partners provide a variant ID in cases where content is using the same metadata but has a different video asset available in a specific market. Variant ID only appears in the availability record and on the asset delivery, and the values must match between these two components. Since a content ID can only appear once in an availability feed, a variant ID should only reflect that a unique asset must be used in a given market. You cannot supply two variant IDs for the same content ID in one market.

Both Channels and Video App Integrations partners should provide the following metadata in the catalog feed:

  • Title
  • Description
  • Genre (See supported genres
  • Ratings and advisories (See supported lists)
  • Cast and crew (credits)
  • Artwork
  • Indication if content is originally produced by or for the partner (isOriginal)
  • Original spoken locale
  • Production country
  • Country of origin
  • Release dates and air dates
  • Season and episode numbers (for TV shows)
  • Copyright line

Regional metadata requirements

Your content should also include localized metadata based on where your service is available. Locale values must be provided in BCP-47 format. Work with your Apple Partner Technical Representative if you have any questions about which locales to use for the markets where your services are available.

Certain metadata elements are required in order to ingest the item in the catalog and availability feeds. These elements and attributes are marked as “Required” in the catalog specifications

Depending on the markets where your services are available, there may be regional data requirements in order for content to go live. This may include localized metadata for any of the elements listed above in certain markets such as Brazil and Japan.

For Channels and Video App Integrations partners in the Apple Video Partner Program, there are additional metadata requirements beyond what is required to ingest data in the catalog feed. Refer to the UMC Catalog Data Requirements for a list of required metadata.

Note: Although some items are marked as Optional in the specifications and in the data requirements documentation, Apple may request that you supply additional data points to improve content mapping for canonical pages.