id="article-body" class="row" section="article-body"> Apple has finally explained what Apple TV Plus is all about (well, almost). With a reported budget of $6 billion to rope in some of Hollywood's biggest stars, Apple TV Plus will launch Nov. 1 for $5 a month. People who buy a new Apple gadget get to watch free for a year, while everyone else qualifies for a seven-day free trial. Apple TV Plus was first announced at a star-studded event in March, but the company stayed mum about the crucial details until its iPhone event in September.
Since then, Apple has been ramping up its promotion of the handful of originals it'll feature on Apple TV Plus. Most recently, Apple released a trailer for Truth Be Told, the mystery drama starring Oscar winner Octavia Spencer and Emmy winner Aaron Paul. The limited series follows a true-crime podcaster and journalist, played by Spencer, as she reinvestigates a murder and questions if she helped put the wrong man, played by Paul, behind bars for it. It'll premiere on the service Dec. 6.
The company announced a new project Thursday, a limited-series thriller called Lisey's Story starring Clive Owen and Julianne Moore. The show, about a woman facing repressed realizations about her husband two years after his death, is being produced by Stephen King and has J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot production company attached too. Apple also struck an exclusive deal with Alfonso Cuarón for Home Decoration
the famed director's first television projects.
Apple TV Plus, the Netflix-like subscription service featuring Apple's original TV shows and movies, will launch with nine confirmed titles, including a drama starring Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston, a post-apocalyptic thriller starring Jason Momoa, a comedy about poet Emily Dickinson starring Hailee Steinfeld and a book-focused series with Oprah Winfrey called Oprah's Book Club. Apple Report
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After launch, the nine programs will be expanded by another five that Apple confirmed it will add in the following months. According to the company, "most" Apple TV Plus series will premiere with three episodes available immediately, followed by one new episode weekly. Full seasons of "some" series will be available all at once, Apple said.
The other programs available on Apple TV Plus at launch are confirmed to be: a Sesame Street spinoff called Helpsters; a kids program called Ghostwriter; animated series Snoopy in Space; and The Elephant Queen, a documentary movie that the company acquired at the Toronto Film Festival.
Apple CEO Tim Cook isn't playing at modesty. In March, he heralded Apple TV Plus as "unlike anything that's been done before." Here's everything we know. What's Apple's TV service like?
Apple TV Plus will be subscription streaming service to watch the company's original series and movies exclusively. Like Netflix, it won't have ads.
Unlike Netflix, it won't release full seasons of its shows all at once in a binge-able bunch. "Most" Apple TV Plus series will premiere three episodes followed by one new episode
every week, Apple says; full seasons of "some" series will drop all at the same time, though.
Apple TV Plus will also reside inside Apple's TV app. There, Apple TV Plus will sit next to other video subscriptions such as HBO or Starz. (But not the biggie, Netflix.)
Apple TV Plus will be available in more than 100 countries and will also be part of Apple's family sharing feature, which allows you and up to five family members to share a plan. Apple originals will be available in 4K, HDR and Dolby Vision, and most titles also offer Dolby Atmos sound, according to this Apple support page.
We still have a few big questions. We don't know if Apple's service will also have a library of licensed shows and movies, though this is looking unlikely. And we haven't heard anything about whether Apple will package Apple TV Plus with other subscriptions, such as Apple Arcade, Apple News Plus and Apple Music, into a discounted bundle a la Disney Plus being packaged with Hulu and ESPN Plus. How much will it cost?
Apple TV Plus will cost $5 a month and offer a seven-day free trial. People who buy a new iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, iPod Touch or Mac starting Sept. 10 will qualify for a free subscription for one year. Current Apple device owners aren't grandfathered in. Enlarge ImageApple TV Plus talent gathers with CEO Tim Cook in the lobby of the Steve Jobs Theater.
Art Streiber/Apple The free-year offer applies to both new and refurbished models, including devices from the iPhone Upgrade Program, and it's not restricted to any specific sales channel, so it applies to both Apple Store purchases and those at resellers. It will be available in all countries where Apple TV Plus launches.
By comparison, Disney Plus, the highly anticipated streaming service from the entertainment giant, will launch Nov. 12 for $7 a month -- with a large library of movies and shows available immediately. Streaming services based on cable networks, like Showtime or HBO Now, usually range between $9 to $15 a month. Smaller, niche streaming services
often are priced at about $5 or a couple bucks.
And Netflix, the world's biggest subscription streaming service, prices its most popular plan at $13 a month in the US; it offers other tiers at $9 and $16 a month.
Free trials are the industry standard: Most streaming video services offer introductory free periods for new members. But Apple's one-year free period for gadget owners is atypically long. But the tactic worked well for Apple Music -- Apple launched its music service with an extended, six-month free trial, and Apple Music quickly became the world's second most popular music service by subscribers behind Spotify. When will it launch?
Apple TV Plus will launch Nov. 1 in more than 100 countries and regions, the company said.
The company said its originals will be subtitled or dubbed in nearly 40 languages, including closed captions for people who are hearing impaired, and Apple TV Plus series and movies will also be available with audio descriptions in eight languages.What devices will be able to stream it?
Apple's programming will be available on all Apple devices with the new Apple TV app.
In addition, Apple TV Plus will presumably be available on some competitor's devices. Apple's TV app is available on smart TVs from Samsung, and it's supposed to become available this year on Roku, Amazon's Fire TV devices and smart TVs from Sony, LG and Vizio. Subscribers will also be able to watch Apple TV Plus on the web at tv.apple.com.
Reese Witherspoon (left) and Jennifer Aniston revealed the name of their Apple TV Plus series, The Morning Show, at Apple's event in March.
Claudia Cruz/CNET But the Apple TV app isn't available on any mobile devices except iPhones or iPads. That means Apple TV Plus subscribers with non-Apple phones will need to stream to their mobiles
via the web, rather than in an app. What shows and movies will it have?
Apple's shows run the gamut of drama, comedy, documentary -- even undefined deals with a single big star attached. It's also spending big to get top Hollywood names: Winfrey, Steven Spielberg and J.J. Abrams and other heavy hitters are on board. CNET keeps a tally of the more than 30 Apple shows known so far, and it has details on every program.