Apple is thinking way beyond devices and even beyond its own popular services. With Apple TV+, the folks at Apple Park will now be creating, managing and producing original shows, movies and documentaries along with the best names in the industry from Steven Spielberg to Oprah Winfrey.
So what will Apple TV+ offer? We answer some questions around Apple’s TV streaming service
What is Apple TV+?
Apple TV+ is the original video content streaming service from Apple which will be made available as part of the Apple TV app. All the content is exclusive to this service. The difference compared to a Netflix or Amazon Prime Video is that there’s no licensed programming from other platforms or older shows or movies, which is what the other two also offer in addition to their original content. The focus with Apple TV+ is on content that has been created specifically for this service.
How much will Apple TV+ cost?
Apple has not yet revealed the price of the video streaming service, which will only roll out in fall of 2019. Pricing based on regions, countries will likely be announced once the service goes live. There will be a Family Sharing option to allow users to share Apple TV+ and subscriptions to Apple TV channels.
Will Apple TV+ video streaming come to India ?
Apple TV+ is expected to come to India, though the company has not yet given a list of countries where the service will roll out. The new Apple TV app, where this subscription service will be made available, is coming to over 100 countries and we expect in India to be on the list. On iOS, the update with the new Apple TV app will come by May. On Mac, this update is expected in fall.
Which platforms, other than iOS or MacOS will support the Apple TV+ video streaming service?
Apple has said that the new TV app will work on iOS, macOS and tvOS. The app is also coming to other platforms such as Samsung smart TVs by spring 2019. It will also be rolled out for Amazon Fire TV, LG televisions, Roku, Sony and VIZIO platforms in the future, though Apple did not give a confirmed timeline.
What it means is that if you have a Fire TV stick or a Samsung or Sony or LG smart TV, in the future it will support the Apple TV app, and you will be able to access content from the Apple TV+ streaming service on these devices as well.
Apple also says that customers with eligible VIZIO, Samsung, LG and Sony smart TVs will be able to play videos and other content from their iPhone or iPad directly to their smart TVs with AirPlay 2 support.
However, Apple did not confirm whether a user would be able to just stream content from Apple TV+ on their web browser like Chrome or Firefox, like one does with say the Netflix website. There was no mention of an Android app either, which indicates the service might be limited to Apple devices, at least when it first rolls out.
So what shows will Apple TV+streaming service have?
This is really the key question for Apple’s video streaming service considering it will be competing with Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu and other streaming companies at least when it comes to the original content and shows.
Apple is teaming up with Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Octavia Spencer, JJ Abrams, Jason Momoa, M Night Shyamalan, Jon M Chu and others for its content.
With Spielberg, there will be a show called ‘Amazing Stories’, Aniston, Witherspoon and Steve Carell will star in ‘The Morning Show’, Jason Momoa is starring in ‘See’. Oprah has two shows lined up, though the names have not been finalised. One of the Oprah shows will focus on the issue of mental health and is expected to be a documentary series. There will also be a show with Kumail Nanjiani titled ‘Little America’, which will look at the immigrant experiences in America.
At the event, Apple didn’t have any trailers for any of these shows which likely means that the shows are not yet ready. Though they will have to be by fall this year, when the service is supposed to official roll out. Apple says the TV+ service will be an ad-free experience for users.
Disclaimer: The author is in San Jose at the invite of Apple India