Apple Increases Prices of Its Streaming Services for First Time

For the first time, Apple is raising U.S. prices for Apple Music and Apple TV+ subscription services. Starting this week, both new and existing customers will pay rates starting at $6.99 per month for Apple TV+ and $10.99 per month for Apple Music, a 40 percent and 10 percent increase, respectively. The family music plan, for up to six accounts, increases to $16.99 per month (from $14.99). Cost of the Apple One bundle — which includes TV, Music, Apple Arcade and iCloud+ storage — also rises as competing streamers raise prices while vying more aggressively for market share.

The individual Apple One subscription, which comes with 50 gigabytes of cloud storage, now costs $16.95 per month (up from $14.95), while the premiere plan of up to six accounts and 2 terabytes of storage, with Apple News+ and Apple Fitness+ added, is now $32.95 per month (from $29.95). Variety details some intermediate plans, and savings for those who renew annually.

The price hikes make Apple Music “more expensive than services from Spotify Technology SA and,” according to Bloomberg, which says Spotify stock surged “as much as 9.4 percent to $97.07 in response to the news, its biggest intraday rally in almost three months.”

Warner Music Group shares also rallied by as much as 15 percent as a result of the move, which Apple attributed to “an increase in licensing costs,” explaining that artists and songwriters will receive more money, Bloomberg says.

As for its streaming video plan, “Apple will continue to offer a lower price than companies like Netflix Inc. or Warner Bros. Discovery Inc., but that service has been slow to build as big a following as rival platforms,” Bloomberg adds.

In recent years, Apple has focused on building service sectors, like streaming, diversifying from its foundational hardware. Services now generate “nearly a quarter of the company’s sales — almost $20 billion in the June quarter — up from less than 10 percent in 2015,” Bloomberg writes.

But Apple “warned that the services business growth would slow in the September quarter, partially because of a strong dollar,” says CNBC, explaining “the price hikes come during a period of rapid inflation around the world that is forcing businesses to raise prices while still attempting to preserve consumer demand.” Apple’s fiscal Q4 and full year results earnings call is scheduled for Thursday.

Yahoo Finance said that Paramount Global CEO Bob Bakish warned “streaming pricing is going to go up” at the Yahoo Finance All Markets Summit, adding that “consumers will likely absorb the cost increases since ‘streaming represents an extraordinary value in general for the consumer.’”

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