Apple's planned TV service has been long talked about and long delayed. In 2015, reports indicated that the delay in bringing the service to market had to do with negotiations for local programming. Last month, a report surfaced that claimed Apple's insistence on staying away from programming with sex and violence was threatening the service. Many wondered how Apple planned to lure in subscribers, in a Netflix world, with bland original content. The answer is that Apple reportedly has no plans to sell subscriptions to its service, for now.
People who claim to be familiar with its plans say that Apple plans to give its original programming away to all Apple device owners. That means anyone who owns an iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple TV will have access to the original programming without needing to pay for it. The sources claim that the original programming will be accessible in the pre-installed TV application that is already on Apple's devices.
These sources claim that there will be subscription offerings in Apple's streaming service. However, those subscription items will be for networks such as HBO and Starz. Apple is reportedly aiming at early 2019 to launch the new streaming service, according to those familiar with its plans. One upside to the TV app that Apple is said to use is that there will be no need to install individual apps for each of the subscription services a user has.
That means you can skip installing HBO Go or other pay network apps, freeing up storage space for other apps you might want. Apple has the deep pockets needed to start an original programming streaming service, and reports indicate that it has spent about $1 billion on original content this year with an eye towards "PG-rated" shows that appeal to mass audiences. Word is that Apple has a plan to offer free "tent-pole" franchises to users that would help it funnel free users into paid subscribers down the road with an eventual Netflix-like service. Apple currently has 24 original shows in development according to recent reports.