Rumors have been swirling since at least 2015 that Apple will announce a new streaming TV service, and we’re expecting it to be announced March 25th. This is very exciting for fans of Apple content, especially since the company has been hiring famous directors left and right to create fascinating new shows like Time Bandits and other, largely PG-rated, TV shows.
Of course, Apple has serious (and experienced) competition in this market, so they really need to come out of the gate swinging and not stop until they achieve a sizable fan base. To help out, we’re going to talk about the things we really, really want to see from Apple’s new TV service.
No Extra Charge for 4K
Hey Apple, you’ve already set precedence for this by offering free 4K upgrades for iTunes content – please continue the streak by not differentiating prices for your 4K content! We’re all heading to 4K-everything anyway. Just jump ahead of the pack and offer the same price whether people want to watch in 4K or not. If streaming costs really are too burdensome to do this, at least offer super-competitive 4K pricing so that users will be tempted to upgrade.
An Early Release Date
If Apple announces the service this March, we’d love to see the service actually arrive in April. If Apple announces the service in early June, please deliver later in June. We know that most of the original content isn’t going to be ready until late this year or 2020, and that’s fine. But we don’t want to wait months after the announcement to experience the new content platform. Fortunately, Apple has a good track record of releasing things soon after their announcements (save for AirPower), so we expect this will be the case.
We already have reports that one of Apple’s strategies for the new streaming service is to offer free content to all of those with Apple devices. No, this isn’t a “download a U2 album to everyone’s phones without asking” type of new content. This is being able to log into the streaming service and watch content on demand without paying. We think that’s a great idea. In fact, we really want Apple to push this. Amaze us with the amount of free content that’s available. Get everyone with an iPhone or iPad to at least check out the service to see what they’re getting without a fee. This is how you engage people.
Availability Beyond Apple Devices
Speaking of iPhones and iPads, Apple’s TV service should have availability beyond Apple devices. Apple TV is a great example of how not to do this – Apple shouldn’t limit content based on having a particular device paired to a TV. Look at Netflix: You can get Netflix anywhere, on basically anything (Hulu also does well with this, available on things like Amazon’s Echo Show). Most TVs sold come with Netflix practically built in! We really need the same with Apple’s TV service. Make it available on all the TVs, receivers, consoles and mobile devices.
Movie Theater Disruption? Sure, Why Not!
There’s also talk of Apple releasing movies just a few weeks after they hit theaters. If Apple can do this, it may be the start of serious disruption for the movie theater business, which hasn’t been doing great lately anyway. We’re all for this step. The movie release process is based on arbitrary decisions that aren’t really backed by anything these days but old business models due for a lot more disruption. If Apple can deliver on this rumor – and let us access new movies sooner – it could be game-changing.
Lower Price Than HBO
Please Apple, price the new service very carefully. We absolutely shouldn’t be paying as much as HBO for it, especially since content is going to be a little bare for the first year. In fact, we probably shouldn’t be paying as much as Netflix now charges, either. The newer streaming services are charging around $7 to $9 per month for their services. Stick with this range or (even below it).