Apple’s forthcoming streaming video service is scheduled to launch in November and come priced at $9.99 a month, according to a new report this evening from Bloomberg.
The company has yet to talk pricing or a release date for the service, despite announcing it back in March of this year. But this window puts Apple’s product right up against the launch of Disney+, the entertainment juggernaut’s own streaming service that is set to feature a mix of original Disney films, Marvel content, Star Wars content, and original shows and movies across all of its properties and networks.
According to Bloomberg, Apple is looking to reach $50 billion in annual services revenue by 2020, and the launch of TV Plus is integral to that milestone. Come November, the service will arrive with only five original shows: The Morning Show featuring Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon; See featuring Aquaman’s Jason Momoa; a production called Truth Be Told with actress Octavia Spencer; Steven Spielberg’s revival of Amazing Stories; and a documentary series called Home. It is not yet clear whether Apple will also have licensed content, although the company does own the rights to the entire Peanuts library and is planning an educational Snoopy spinoff for its platform.
Still, that’s not a very robust lineup if it is limited to those five show , and Apple is reportedly going to add shows at a pace slower than soon-to-be rivals like Netflix, according to an interview services chief Eddy Cue gave to The Sunday Times back in June. However, Apple has attracted a number of other big names, including Oprah Winfrey, who is bringing two documentaries to TV Plus, and Battlestar Galactica creator Roger Moore, who’s heading up a new space show called For All Mankind. Apple is also reportedly spending hundreds of millions of dollars on The Morning Show and See each, and it’s been green lighting new shows for close to two years now.
However, Apple’s reported $6 billion in original content spending, a massive increase from its initial $1 billion pledge two years ago, pales in comparison to the more than $14 billion Netflix is expected to spend this year and the nearly $24 billion Disney is expected to shell out for streaming and theatrical releases.
That said, Apple does not appear to be launching its service later this year with any kind of bundle in place. That may make its five-show lineup for $10 a month a hard sell against something like Disney+, which is launching on its own for $6.99 per month and will also be available with Hulu and a stripped-down version of ESPN thrown in for $12.99 per month.