Why Is Apple TV+ Raising Prices Again?

Just over a year ago the streaming service was $4.99/month. Soon, it'll be double that.

Posters from four popular shows on Apple TV Plus, which is increasing prices
Is all this worth $10 per month when it used to half that?

Apple TV+ is raising prices…again. According to MacRumors, customers of the streaming service will see a monthly charge that was $6.99 per month bumped up to $9.99. The tech giant is also raising prices on Apple Arcade, News+, bundled services and annual subscriptions (which go from $69 to $99 per year).

The real question is, why?

Apple TV+ wants to be like the pre-Max HBO — offering a heavily curated selection of programs for a premium price. The problem is that they don’t have the inventory or the quality; the service is notoriously light on films compared to other streamers and only offers a modest amount of proprietary content. Sure, we loved Ted Lasso and we’re working our way through Foundation. Some people like The Morning Show or For All Mankind. Jon Stewart has had a show there for a hot moment. And the service remains free of ads (which might have kept the prices lower but we occasionally need a respite from endless Skyrizi adverts — looking at you, Hulu.)

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The monthly price increase reflects big financial losses even after the company posted impressive subscriber numbers

But even if you bundle it with Apple Music (which, oddly, is not raising prices, unlike Spotify) and another service to get a discount, this is the same app that was going for $4.99 per month just over a year ago. The bump up last October to $6.99 felt a bit egregious, but essentially doubling the subscription price in 12 months feels downright greedy. Apple, like Amazon, certainly isn’t in the same position as Max, Netflix, Disney, Paramount+ or Peacock, which rely much more on ads and subscribers to make profits (or not — Peacock somehow gained an impressive four million additional customers last quarter and still lost $565 million).

In a statement shared with MacRumors, Apple said they were “focused on delivering the best experiences possible for our customers by consistently adding high-quality entertainment, content, and innovative features to our services.”

Given that we’re about to hit a dearth of content due to the just-ended writer’s strike and the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike, the quick and aggressive pricing move by Apple seems particularly circumspect.

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