Apple TV+: Can it be saved before everyones free trials run out?

Enlarge / When Apple TV+ landed on November 1, it did not include all of these original series, thanks to its "soft launch."Apple

When Apple TV+ launched in November 2019, it was the first of four major video-streaming services that would launch between then and May of the next year. It was also one of the riskiest of the set, coming from a company that had zero experience in creating entertainment. With the services 90-day mark fast approaching, its time to take Apple TV+s temperature.

And, yes, its ice-cold. But is Apple TV+ really as dead in the water as it appears? And what do we expect for the rest of its first year?

So many devices, so little excitement

From the jump, Apple seemed an odd addition to a lineup of players, all of whom were already in the content-creation business. Apple has never been interested in producing its own fare so much as using others content to promote its closed hardware ecosystem. But that hardware component was Apples claim to enter the derby. The company boasts two billion devices in pockets around the world. If just 10 percent of those users signed up after getting a free year of Apple TV+ with the purchase of a device, it would give the company 200 million subscribers worldwide, dwarfing Netflixs 158 million.

But 10 percent may be an ambitious reach. Disney+ (launched two weeks after Apple TV+) or NBC Peacock and HBO Max (starting in April and May of 2020 respectively) have or will arrive with vast libraries of movies and TV series, highlighting their family-friendly fare to bolster their appeal for subscription dollars. (Disney+ is the most obvious one aiming for “family” right now, but both NBC and HBO have focused on kiddie offerings on their upcoming services as well.) Apple TV+, in contrast, launched with just four shows, all brand-new originals targeting an adult-level audience, with nothing as backfill that might appeal to an all-ages crowd.

This proved foolhardy when even the best of Apple TV+ offerings, Dickinson and For All Mankind, came with caveats not to take it too seriously or that it started slow. The most ambitious project, See, was a masturbatory disaster, while the star-studded Morning Show was barely mediocre. Even a few modest nods from the Golden Globes to the Hollywood A-list stars of The Morning Show like Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon didnt do much to percolate interest—at least, not in the shadow of Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon's years of award-winning, streaming-only content.

Second seasons already?

Apple TV+ was also run over by Disney+s far more successful launch with The Mandalorian. The first-ever Star Wars live-action series sucked the oxygen out of the streaming room, leaving Apple struggling to catch anyones attention with follow-up shows like Servant, despite a stellar cast and M. Night Shyamalans name plastered all over it. (The lawsuit that followed Servants first season isnt helping either.) Perhaps the most damning issue is that Apple did not build itself to be a nimble player, despite the light load of shows. Convinced it had the next big things, the company greenlighted second seasons of all of the launch shows beforehand, essentially committing itself to these vaguely dud titles for at least another year.

Now the service is launching what is inarguably its best series to date, Little America, from The Big Sick writers Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon along with Lee Eisenberg of The Office fame. The docu-series is “inspired by true stories featured in Epic Magazine” of the immigrant experience in modern America. For the first time on Apple TV+, all 10 episodes will drop at once, instead of a weekly release schedule, in the hopes of getting it more attention.

But once again, the timing is terrible: Little America arrived all of 12 hours after Peacock shook up the streaming landscape by undercutting what had been Apple TV+s rock bottom cost of $4.99 with the even lower subscription price of free. (As in, free with ads, or $5/mo for more content and fewer ads.)

What Apple TV+ needs now is a return to its parent companyRead More – Source

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