Apple seems to be ready to roll out the Apple TV+ movie and TV subscription service by November.
The company will introduce a small selection of shows and then expand its catalog more frequently over several months, according to Bloomberg's sources. A free trial is likely as Apple builds up its library, said the report.
The iPhone maker is entering an increasingly crowded field, led by streaming pioneer Netflix Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. In the coming months, Walt Disney Co., AT&T Inc. and Comcast Corp.’s NBCUniversal will debut new offerings -- all targeted at the growing ranks of viewers who are canceling cable-TV subscriptions or watching on mobile devices.
With its first foray into video subscriptions, Apple is considering offering the first three episodes of some programs, followed by weekly installments. Netflix tends to release whole seasons at once for bingeing, while AT&T’s HBO and Disney’s Hulu often release episodes weekly. The service will launch globally in over 150 countries.
Apple TV+ will be one of five major digital subscription services in Apple’s portfolio, along with Apple Music, the upcoming Apple Arcade gaming service, Apple News+ and iCloud storage subscriptions.
Apple hasn’t announced pricing for Apple TV+, but is weighing $9.99 a month, which would match Apple Music and Apple News+. Netflix and Amazon Prime charge as little as $8.99, while Disney+ plans to seek $6.99 when its service debuts in November.
Apple is pushing into services to generate added revenue from its large base of iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple Watch users. Consumers have been slower to replace hardware recently due to higher prices, market saturation, economic headwinds and a lack of breakthrough features.