5 biggest announcements from Apple events in March
After a week of hardware updates almost every day before today, Apple finally launched its software news with a new subscription service attack. Today brings Apple subscriptions on news, television and video games just a week after Google launched Google Stadia at the Game Developers Conference.
Keynote today also presents a new business venture for Apple with a new credit card service. All of the above services highlight privacy as Apple’s main differentiator, with each product noting that there will be no advertisements, and your consumption behavior will never be shared with marketers. Interestingly enough, many products announced today did not receive live demos on stage, and most will be available far later this year.
Here’s the biggest recap of the announcement from today’s program.
Apple added the magazine to the ranks of Apple News with Apple News Plus. A $ 9.99 monthly subscription is available today in the US and Canada, and the price includes family sharing. The first month is free.
Apple News Plus displays a magazine with a new “Live Cover” presentation, lightly moving the cover for an interactive look and feel. Under the cover, the highlighted story is listed with description, and the service recommends a story that you might like even if it’s from a magazine that you don’t normally read. You can also explore the magazine you are subscribing to, and new problems are automatically downloaded to read when offline.
When launched, customers can access up to 300 magazines. Other digital and traditional news partners are also part of this service, including The Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times. Apple praised the privacy of its application, noting that advertisers cannot track what you read so you will not receive targeted ads based on the stories you click on.
Apple followed Amazon’s footsteps to the credit card scene with a new Apple Card. Unlike traditional applications, you can apply directly to your iPhone and, once approved, the card is stored digitally in the Wallet application where you can view your payment reports, balances, and due dates. The application also marks locations and retailers to help you browse transactions and remember where you might make the purchase.
The card also generates a new security code every time you make a purchase. It doesn’t even have a credit card number, CVV, signature, or expiration date. (You can generate one, if you plan to buy something from a site that does not support the Apple Card but take 16 digit credit card information.) Details about what you have purchased are also stored locally to, again, prevent potential ad targeting.
The Apple Card, supported by Goldman Sachs and Mastercard, also offers a 2 percent cash back prize (3 percent for Apple purchases) paid daily to your Apple Pay account that you can use to pay credit card balances, in-app purchases, or transfer to a friend. The card must be accepted wherever the Mastercard is located. Apple will also offer a physical titanium card for use in real life or when you are traveling, but the prize for the purchase is a 1 percent cash refund.
According to Apple, there are no late fees or interest rate increases for late payments, but we will read small details to see if there are limits. This application will offer a wheel that shows how much your interest ultimately pays based on the minimum payment you make to help you make a decision. Apple cards will be available this summer.
The iPhone has never been the highest in the list of what you consider to be a traditional gaming device, but it hopes to change it with the new Apple Arcade game subscription service. Unlike the cloud gaming service announced by Google last week on GDC, Apple’s version is more like subscribing to games available through the App Store rather than traditional titles that you can play on sets such as PlayStation, Xbox, or Nintendo Switch (except, of course, this game also offered on iOS).
The company did not disclose subscription fees, but said that it would include access to more than 100 games exclusive to iOS. You can also play games on all Apple devices, including iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, and Mac computers, and games will be available to play offline.
Apple TV Channels
The new Apple TV update will now include a focus on channels such as HBO, PBS, CBS, Acorn TV, and Tastemade without shuffling users to third-party applications. Called the Apple TV Channel, customers can choose which channel they want to subscribe to and pay per channel, not a large traditional package from a cable company. However, prices are not shared at the time of keynote.
The Apple TV application will receive updates for this May Channel. This application will also come to Mac in the fall, and will be available through smart television, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV starting this spring. Support will be extended to more than 100 countries, but the company does not determine the regional launch schedule.
And also … Apple TV Plus!
Apart from the new Channel service for Apple TV, there is now a Plus package for native programming. Unfortunately, Apple does not announce much detail other than the name and it will be available in the fall with online and offline views. It spent the rest of the time introducing a group of directors, actors and actresses to help reveal Apple TV Plus, including Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Steven Spielberg, Jason Momoa, Steve Carell, Alfre Woodard, Big Bird Street, and Kumail Nanjiani.
Famous people laugh. Famous people force everyone to participate in lightweight ASMR. Sara Bareilles appeared and sang.
In the end, we did not get any trailers for each individual show exhibited by these celebrities. There will be original programming that includes documentaries about the lives of immigrants in America, science fiction about a world where people are blind, and children’s programming featuring Sesame Street characters. Oprah will have two documentaries that highlight abuse in the workplace and mental health. I think we will see more trailers in the fall.