Apple Streaming Service: Likely Release Date, Pricing, and Available Shows

From Silicon Valley to Hollywood.

Apple’s aspirations to develop a Netflix-like streaming business to go with the Apple TV have been kicking around for some time. After all, the company first began poaching Hollywood talent eighteen months ago, in June 2017.

Much like the other streaming heavyweights, Apple’s service is expected to provide a mix of third-party content, channel subscriptions, and a sizable menu of original shows. The company has reportedly allocated $1 billion toward developing its own movies and series, enough to make about 20 shows and mount a formidable challenge to HBO according to a The Wall Street Journal report. But this won’t be a clone of streaming platforms you’ve come to love.

For one, Apple has plans to incorporate its extensive hardware ecosystem into its entertainment service. That will likely include new built-in features for iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV owners. It’ll essentially be the Apple Music of video content and, if that sounds good to you than take heart: It might be here very soon.

Smart TV
This could change the Apple TV platform for good.

Apple TV Streaming: Release Date

An official release date has yet to be announced, but most reports have indicated that it’ll likely launch during the first half of 2019

A New York Times report earlier this year stated the Cupertino-based company could begin rolling out original programming in March 2019 and the following summer. CNBC reports that a launch could happen even earlier, citing anonymous sources.

While these reports differ slightly, we’re mostly splitting hairs: Expect the Apple streaming service to take a center slot next Spring, likely at the first big Apple product launch announced.

netflix
Netflix, Apple is coming for you.

Apple TV Streaming: How Would It Work?

A majority of reporting anticipates that this will a revamp of the TV app that is available on Apple TV, iPhones and iPads. But Bloomberg has reported some early details about what will make the new service different.

Currently, the TV app redirects users to other subscriptions services to like Now TV. Once Apple has its own streaming set-up in-house, users will very likely be encourage to stick around to enjoy Apple’s own programming. Content like newscasts, movies, and series could soon live on the TV app instead of on third-party software. This way Apple users will have access to video content as soon as their devices come out of the box.

Apple TV Streaming: Subscription Cost?

A final subscription cost hasn’t been revealed, either. But it seems likely that Apple will pick a price that is competitive with other streaming services, which are all priced about the same. The cheapest Netflix, Hulu, and Prime Video subscriptions are all roughly $8 per month, so Apple can reasonably be expected to name a price point around that range. The kicker, however, is that it could come with free content for Apple device owners.

The CNBC report stated that iPhones, iPads, and Apple TVs will all come loaded with free, Apple-owned content, suggesting this perk will be limited to the content it produces in house. Accessing subscriptions channels and other online-only services might require payment.

game of thrones
Could Apple make it's own Game of Thrones, like series?

Apple TV Streaming: What Movies and Shows Will Be Featured?

With $1 billion in-hand, Apple obviously has plenty of cash to pull in whatever big names it thinks it needs to ensure the service makes a splash. That said, the company’s first foray into content production was underwhelming, at least in they were in the case of widely-mocked *Planet of the Apps and Carpool Karaoke. That said, most of the shows in the pipeline seem just a touch more ambitious.

Apple hired former Sony Pictures Televisions presidents Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg to lead the push on its original programming. These two new executives have stepped up the caliber of content Apple will be releasing in the near future:

  • Swagger, a biographical drama on NBA all-star Kevin Durant’s youth.
  • An untitled drama series from La La Land writer-director Damien Chazelle.
  • Central Park, an animated show from the creator of Bob’s Burgers.
  • An untitled series from M. Night Shyamalan.
  • An untitled morning show drama series starring Steve Carell, Reese Witherspoon, and Jennifer Aniston (which we take to mean a drama series about characters working on a morning show).
  • A reboot of Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi and horror anthology Amazing Stories.
  • An untitled Ronald D. Moore space drama series.
  • A thriller-drama series called Are You Sleeping starring Octavia Spencer.
  • A docuseries called Home from executive producers Matt Tyrnauer and Corey Reeser.
  • An untitled comedy series starring Kristen Wiig.
  • Defending Jacobs, a drama series produced by and starring Chris Evans.
  • An untitled comedy series written by Rob McElhenney and Charlie Day from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.
  • Foundation, a series based on novels by sci-fi author Isaac Asimov.
  • An untitled mystery series created by Dana Fox and Dara Resnik.
  • Little Voice, a romantic comedy by JJ Abrams, Jessie Nelson, and Sara Bareilles.