During a star-studded event on Monday morning, Apple introduced an updated version of their Apple TV app with all-new Apple TV channels service and the introduction of original programming with the Apple TV Plus subscription service. We’ve broken down everything you need to know about each service.
Redesigned Apple TV App and Channels
Shortly after the introduction of Apple News Plus and Apple Card, Apple introduced an updated Apple TV app for Apple TV, iPad, iPhone, and soon, Mac. Apple also announced that the new Apple TV app will be available on Roku and Amazon streaming devices as well as Samsung, LG, VIZIO, and Sony Smart TVs.
The newly redesigned Apple TV app is “personalized and expertly curated, so you’ll discover the best of what’s on. And it’s all in one place. On all your screens. It’s simple — the new Apple TV app is the ultimate way to watch TV,” says Apple.
Apple touts the new Apple TV app as “All your TV. All in one app.” Apple says the new app brings “over 100,000 movies to buy or rent, popular streaming services, the biggest cable TV providers, and original shows and movies from Apple TV Plus.” Furthermore, the Apple TV channels service allows users to individually subscribe to all their favorite providers such as Showtime, Starz, Epix, CBS, and the Smithsonian.
“Now you can use your Apple ID to quickly and easily subscribe to just the channels you want to watch — like Showtime, CBS, MTV, and more. There are no new apps, accounts, or passwords needed, shows can be shared with up to six family members, and you can even watch offline.”
Apple also says they’ve streamlined the app to include all your favorite streaming services like Prime Video, Hulu, ESPN+, MLB, ABC, and NBC. “Easily watch all your favorite shows from streaming services including Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, ESPN+, and more — all inside the app,” says the website.
In a surprise announcement, Apple says the redesigned Apple TV app will be available on Roku and Amazon Fire TV streaming devices later this year. Samsung will be receiving the app this spring, followed by LG, VIZIO, and Sony later on.
Apple TV Channels and the all-new TV app will be available in May. The Apple TV app for Mac is coming later this fall. In addition to the announcement, Apple also released iOS 12.2 and tvOS 12.2, which bring new Siri features to Apple TV.
Apple TV Plus Subscription
With Apple heavily focusing on its services platform, they introduced Apple TV Plus, a new subscription-based service that is aimed squarely at Netflix.
Apple praises Apple TV Plus as being the “the new home for the world’s most creative storytellers.” Bringing on some of the most influential and creative minds like Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Octavia Spencer, J.J. Abrams, Jason Momoa, M. Night Shyamalan, Jon M. Chu and more.
Many of these creative minds took the stage to announce their projects. Acclaimed filmmaker Steven Spielberg was first to the stage, stating “Apple is a place where imagination and technology join forces.” Spielberg announced his reboot of the Amazing Stories series based on Hugo Gernsback’s 1926 series of science-fiction publications that Spielberg’s father read to him as a child.
Following Spielberg, actresses Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon were joined onstage by Steve Carrell to announce their The Morning Show series. Aniston, Witherspoon, and Carrell stated that The Morning Show will shed a light on morning television and interactions between men and women.
Jason Mamoa and Alfre Woodard took the stage to announce their series See. The series is a world-building drama that, in the aftermath of the largest infection in human history, people are now blind. They must survive without sight.
Kumail Nanjiani, Sesame Street, J.J. Abrams, and Sara Bareilles, all took the stage later on to announce their projects. Nanjiani announced the series Little America that is written by immigrants, or the children of immigrants, that highlight “the true stories of immigrants in the U.S.” Sesame Street announced a new series to teach children how to code, and J.J. Abrams took the stage with Sara Bareilles to announce a two-and-a-half-hour film called Little Voice that highlights the struggle that musicians face while trying to find their voice.
In the end, Oprah announced plans to produce two documentaries, one that highlights mental health, and the other is sexual harassment in the workplace. Oprah announced that she will host a book club that will be live-streamed across Apple Stores and Apple TV Plus worldwide.
Apple didn’t release information regarding the cost of Apple TV Plus, but I expect it to be around $9.99 to $15.99 per month. Apple TV Plus will be available starting in the fall.