Apple TV+ Announced With Star Studded Original Series
Apple has announced Apple TV+, a new streaming service sporting a collection of original series filled with star talent working on them.
The streaming service, launching in Autumn 2019, will be available on all Apple devices as an app, first on iPhone, iPad and Apple TV this May via a software update. Macs will get the update in Autumn, while Samsung TVs will get the app this Spring. Sony, LG and Vizio smart TVs, Roku streamers and Amazon Fire TV devices will support the app ‘in the future’. It’s a vague promise, but hopefully that means support will be coming later this year.
Unlike Netflix, subscribers will be able to download every single show to watch offline as well as stream online, as the house that Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak built will own every single show on the service. Apple has reportedly invested $1 billion into making these original series, which boast an embarrassment of riches.
— Apple TV (@AppleTV) March 26, 2019
Oprah Winfrey will also be making a number of documentaries for the service, which are all ‘original programs that embrace her incomparable ability to connect with audiences around the world.’ One show, called Toxic Labor, will tackle sexual assault in the workplace, while another project currently unnamed will talk about mental health.
Other shows include a collaboration between singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles and J. J. Abrams called Little Voice, about millennials living in Manhattan, a spin-off of Sesame Street about coding called Helpsters, as well as a documentary telling the story of immigrants called Little America.
Welcome to Apple TV+, see you this fall. pic.twitter.com/YzoVRNIKUy
— Apple TV (@AppleTV) March 27, 2019
These shows will have to be excellent for the service to pick up serious numbers, though. While the new streaming service will launch with 30 original shows, it will be dwarfed in comparison to the number of shows Netflix has its disposal. There will be no third party content whatsoever, as that will be coming via Apple TV Channels via a separate service update in May.
The channels on offer with these packages include HBO, Starz, Showtime, CBS and Britbox, a collaboration between British channels BBC and ITV. Having access to HBO does give Apple an advantage over Netflix, which can’t get its hands on any HBO shows. Even Amazon Prime forces you to pay extra to watch HBO shows on top of its original subscription fee.
Interestingly, you only have to pay for the channels you want to watch. Apple won’t force bundles on its customers; if you only want to watch HBO, that’s all you have to pay for. That probably means there will be some kind of payment structure where it’s cheaper to subscribe to multiple channels rather than just one, but we’ll have to see exactly how that will play out, as they haven’t released any pricing info for the streaming service or its TV channels.
With roughly half a year to go until the service launches, we should hear more about prices soon. We’ll bring you more info as soon as it’s released.