Scary Prospect of the Day: Newly Reported Apple Hardware Subscription Model Could Open Apple TV Plus to 133 Million U.S. iPhone Users

Apple iPhone 13
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple is developing a new subscription model that would provide pricey gadgets to consumers for ostensibly affordable monthly fees, according to Bloomberg, which said the new business scheme could be deployed as soon as the end of 2022.

The report provides unnamed sources and sketchy details, but has given the tech press all it needs to jump into speculation ... as in, what if everyone who owned an iPhone had access to services like Apple TV Plus?

Clearly, Apple likes the subscription model. In the first fiscal quarter of 2022, Apple reported revenue of nearly $20 billion from selling subscription-based services.

And it likes bundling its subscription services. 

In late 2020, Apple introduced its "Apple One" bundling strategy, packaging together services including Apple Music, Apple TV Plus, Apple Arcade and iCloud storage in tiers ranging from $19.95 - $29.95 a month. 

Currently, you can buy devices like the highly popular iPhone from Apple in installments, paying for it in 12 - 24 monthly payments. That's a separate bill from your service subscriptions, but what if the device subscription were to be bundled with services like Apple TV Plus under the Apple One strategy?

With 113 million iPhone users in the U.S. alone, according to 2021 Statista data, that could dramatically increase the subscriber count, as yet unknown, for services like Apple TV Plus. 

Consider that there are only around 75 million U.S. subscribers for the leading subscription service, Netflix. 

Apple has goosed uptake of Apple TV Plus by offering the service for free promotional periods with the purchase of Apple hardware.

But if distribution of the subscription streaming service were permanently tethered to popular hardware, it could truly change the game in terms of Apple TV Plus scale. ■

Daniel Frankel

Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!