Apple announced a lot of services at a special event held on the 25th of March.
A service which offers curated content and 300 magazines at 9.99 dollars per month – makes sense. Even if you read 2 or 3 magazines, the monthly subscription should cover the cost. You will never be able to read 300 magazines! Instead, a better way to price this would have been choosing 3 or 5 categories, and the reader will get magazines in those domains delivered via the News app. My subscribed categories would have been investing, sales and marketing, technology. These are the areas where I want to build my circle of competence.
An online gaming service. A paid service which gives you access to 100 odd premium games. The audience appears to be casual gamers.
Nothing new here either. Lack of creativity with naming a product with an iconic trademark. On-demand is the name of the game; you add a lot of original content and expect people to pay for watching this. My view on this is, the streaming landscape if already fragmented and if every other company launches this, there will be no incentive for the viewer. They will not pay for each content provider to see their exclusive content. I subscribe to two providers. Sky and Netflix. And I am happy to make either one of these redundant should the price become unsustainable.
I trust Apple more than any other service provider with its principles related to privacy and security. The reason I do not use their phone as a primary driver as they are unaffordable at around £1,000 per phone; I am also unable to keep a phone for more than 18 months. I need the latest and the greatest. I know this is my shortcoming, but this is what it is. Having said this, I do miss Apple Pay.
I use Google Pay on my OnePlus, but I do not trust it as much. I have highlighted this to Google that Google Pay allows the payment without confirming the password or fingerprint! It’s a farce. I have to turn on/off the NFC chip because I am worried about fraud.
The Apple Card makes sense and its the right way to do things. Little or no charges, daily rewards and helping people take more control of their finances.
Somehow, I feel, this is a step in the wrong direction. Apple’s mantra has been laser sharp focus. A thousand no’s for one yes. And I get it. When Steve returned to Apple in 1997, he culled all the product lines and started with Macs and iPods. Now, things have started to dilute again. Too many SKUs, too much fragmentation.
So now an Apple user now has to pay –
It is getting ridiculous, or maybe Apple’s clientele can afford these. I do not know. Although I love the products, I do own a Macbook and iPad. I gave on iPhones because they are way overpriced.
I believe, Apple should have gone the Amazon Prime way. A $100-$150 annual fees to get all the bundle mentioned above. All or nothing. Adoption would have been better. I may be wrong; time will tell.
From an investing perspective, Apple has communicated to the market ‘please be patient, we are working on a couple of things.’ With iPhone units not being published going forward and sales lack in the coming Q1 2019 earnings calls, the Special Event was a PR gimmick. Half baked services with nothing substantial behind the announcement.