(Bloomberg) — Apple Inc. unveiled a series of subscription bundles, a long-awaited move that Wall Street hopes will spur more growth in services revenue.
At an online event on Tuesday, the company said it will launch Apple One subscriptions that combine several services — including Apple Music, Apple TV+ and iCloud storage — at a lower price than users would pay if they bought each service individually.
The bundles start at US$14.95 a month for a tier including Apple Music, Apple Arcade, Apple TV+, and 50 GB of iCloud storage. That lower tier will also have a US$19.95 version for families. A Premier tier costs US$29.95, adding Apple News+, Apple Fitness+ and 2TB of iCloud storage.
The offerings are geared toward families, meaning they will work with Appleâs Family Sharing system that provides access to as many as six people for each service.
The Apple One Individual plan offers savings of more than US$6 a month, while the Family plan saves over US$8 per month, the company said in a statement. The Premier plan saves over US$25 a month, based on standard monthly pricing, Apple added.
The initiative is a major bid by Apple to achieve the same loyalty that Amazon.com Inc. has won with its Prime program, which combines free shipping with video streaming and many other services for an annual or monthly fee. This bundle is the bedrock of Amazonâs success and has been mimicked by other companies before with mixed results.
Apple has no large e-commerce delivery and warehouse network like Amazonâs, however it has hundreds of millions of ardent hardware customers who have already embraced some of its digital subscriptions. Unlike Prime, Apple is offering several variations at different prices. The bundle offerings will also include access to the Apple Arcade gaming service and Apple News+.
The company also announced a new online workout service called Apple Fitness+, which offers users video classes for workouts. This will integrate with the Fitness app on the iPhone and Apple TV, and requires an Apple Watch. The service will compete with offerings from Peloton Interactive Inc., which sells subscriptions to its fitness service that run in apps and on its workout equipment.
For years, analysts and investors have called for Apple to mimic Amazonâs Prime approach. Some of Appleâs newer services, including News+ and TV+, have started slowly. By bundling them at a discount with more popular services, usage and subscriptions could increase.
Appleâs services segment is one of the companyâs fastest growth areas and has become a US$50 billion-a-year business. While services like those for advertising and AppleCare were down in recent quarters due to the impact of COVID-19, digital offerings like the App Store, iCloud and video products set records.
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Apple, Subscription business model, iCloud
World news – CA – Apple debuts Apple One subscription bundles, its twist on Prime – BNN Bloomberg