A Bigger, All-Encompassing Apple TV - But At What Price?

Apple’s highly anticipated new streaming service, Apple TV+, is missing something: price.

Is it $10? $20? $30/month? Who cares? When you are an Apple devotee, there is built-in expectations. Big fans of Apple products are known to buy up virtually anything it has to offer, especially proven upgraded products, like the iPhone, as soon as they available.

Maybe that’s why Apple was being coy.

Many have pitted Apple against Netflix, the video market favorite. But on the surface, this comparison doesn’t say much.

For example, Apple is only now getting into the original TV series game, with around 24 original TV series in production or development. Compare this to Netflix, with 700 or so original TV/movies series. What does that say?

Consumers are a smart bunch. The streaming marketplace is far from being decided, with other big players coming, such as NBCUniversal and WarnerMedia.



That is why Apple TV Plus is looking at an all-encompassing TV service, such as: 1) a subscription-on-demand piece (like Netflix, Hulu), 2) an a la carte service, Apple TV Channels, where consumers can pick and chose networks (Amazon Channels), and 3) a hub where consumer can get live, linear TV network services, both traditional and virtual (Sling TV, DirecTV).

And of course, Apple has much more going for it, including its longtime mobile device, iPhone, as well as other big and popular consumer technology, including iPads and laptops.

We can’t forget Apple has many other businesses -- including new services, released at the same time as Apple TV+; a credit card, Apple Card; one for gaming, Apple Arcade; and an Apple News service.

While Netflix is positioned to be the main target for Apple’s streaming efforts, and other traditional media companies, the subscription VOD service still only has 6% of Apple’s total revenue.

Plus, Apple TV+ (through Apple TV app) will be available on all platforms -- Amazon Fire TV, LG, Roku, Sony and Vizio platforms -- not just Apple devices.

What does all this mean? Apple is looking at the long game because, at the moment, it can.

Apple wants to be an TV aggregator of all popular TV video platforms. In this complex TV-video world, isn’t that what we really want?

Now comes the hard part: How to market this to consumers. (Hello, price!)

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