What do Oprah, Jason Momoa, Jennifer Aniston, and Big Bird have in common? Well, they all took to the Steve Jobs Theater’s stage yesterday to help Apple launch several new services.
Here’s a quick recap and, more importantly, why you should give a sh*t:
Apple Channels will integrate Netflix-style recs and content from cable, Hulu, and Amazon (but not Netflix and YouTube) into Apple’s app, Apple TV+. The new ad-free streaming service will feature original content made with partners like Oprah, Steven Spielberg, and Reese Witherspoon.
Apple News+ will feature stories from 300+ magazines and newspapers for $9.99/month. Some big publishers (WSJ, NatGeo) are in. But others (NYT, WaPo) are out because Apple demanded a 50% cut.
Apple Card will let people tap their iPhones to Apple Pay — or swipe a titanium, laser-etched, CVV-free card. Card users will earn cash back and track spending in Apple’s Wallet — and get customer support in iMessage.
Apple launched a gaming subscription service called Apple Arcade that will provide access to more than 100 exclusive games. Apple will partner with both “indie” developers and also large game companies.
The shift to services
Apple built its empire on hardware, but this new event proves Apple needs revenue from services in a hardware-saturated world.
With these flashy new services Apple hopes to transform its 1.4B active devices into monthly money-makers that consumers rely on to watch videos, read news, play games, and make payments.
So, will Apple’s new services change the world?
They’re designed to — and Apple has upended industries before (remember Blackberry?) — but, of course, haters still gonna hate.
When Apple released its first iPhone, TechCrunch said it was “about as useful … as a rotary phone,” and Microsoft’s CEO insisted, “There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share.”