If you’re planning to stream the much-anticipated Season 3 of Ted Lasso, you may find that you’ll have to fork over more cash to do so than last season.
That’s because Apple TV+ has increased its subscription price for both monthly and annual subscriptions.
The increase is part of a broader pricing strategy that Apple rolled out for several of its products in late October 2022.
Let’s look at what you can expect to pay moving forward and the reasons that this may just be the beginning of price increases for Apple’s video streaming service.
Apple Raises Price on Apple TV+ for the First Time
Good prices don’t last forever. That’s especially true in the ever-changing world of streaming TV.
In a rare “value” from the premium technology company, Apple launched its Apple TV+ service on November 1, 2019, at a very reasonable price of $5 per month. And it even gave away free subscriptions, sometimes for as long as 12 months, to people who purchased Apple devices so that they could enjoy the new streaming service on their phones, computers and tablets.
As the service turns three years old, Apple has decided it is time to start seeing some increased financial returns from this project.
Apple TV+ raised the price of a monthly subscription from $4.99 to $6.99 on October 24, 2022. The annual subscription rate also was raised to $69.99, which is up $20 from the previous asking price of $49.99.
|Pricing||Old Price||New Price (effective October 24, 2022)|
I logged into my Apple TV+ account to see if the changes were live as of October 25. And while my personal subscription still shows the $4.99 I paid for October, my “available plan” options indicate that soon will switch over to the new pricing model.
Why Apple Is Doing This
The increase in the Apple TV+ subscription price is just one piece of the announcement Apple made on October 24.
In addition to the video streaming service, the Apple Music streaming service and the Apple One bundling subscription also saw price increases.
Apple released a statement on this decision, per CNBC:
“The change to Apple Music is due to an increase in licensing costs, and in turn, artists and songwriters will earn more for the streaming of their music,” said Apple in a statement. “We also continue to add innovative features that make Apple Music the world’s best listening experience. We introduced Apple TV+ at a very low price because we started with just a few shows and movies. Three years later, Apple TV+ is home to an extensive selection of award-winning and broadly acclaimed series, feature films, documentaries, and kids and family entertainment from the world’s most creative storytellers.”
As Apple’s statement points out, the price increase is for a growing library of content options for streamers.
Initially launched with a small library of original content in 2019, the 2022 version of Apple TV+ now includes a more robust menu that includes several hit shows such as Ted Lasso and Severance.
It also includes live sports options, including exclusive weekly broadcasts of Major League Baseball games on Friday nights. Apple has an agreement to stream Major League Soccer as well and is rumored to be in negotiations to acquire NFL streaming rights in the future.
Presumably, consumers will see the value of the sum of these new parts and accept handing over a couple of extra bucks per month to keep their subscriptions.
How the New Pricing Compares to the Competition
Apple is not the only video streaming service increasing its prices as 2022 comes to a close.
Both Disney+ and Netflix soon will be rolling out ad-supported streaming subscriptions to offer a value option for those who are seeking relief from increased prices. Apple TV+ remains an ad-free ecosystem.
Here’s a rundown of the subscription offerings from Apple’s competitors in this space.
|Streaming Service||Ad-Supported Monthly Price||Ad-Free Monthly Price|
|Disney+||$7.99 (beginning Dec. 8)||$7.99 ($10.99 beginning Dec. 8)|
|Netflix||$6.99 (beginning Nov. 3)||$9.99|
As you can see, Apple is still competitively priced even after this price increase to $6.99 per month.
This news stinks for Apple TV+ subscribers, but it hardly comes as a surprise.
Apple TV+ has purposely kept its subscription price low for the first three years of operation as it tried to gain subscribers in this competitive market. But it likely was artificially low.
Streaming services like Disney+ have used a similar pricing strategy to get things off the ground.
Now that bills are coming due on the streaming rights Apple has acquired and costs mount on original productions, it makes sense that Apple is going to ask those customers it has won in the early years to support its growth.
Will you pay the higher price for an Apple TV+ subscription? We’d like to hear what you think in the Clark.com community.