Apple is considering rolling out its paid Internet services, including News +, Apple TV + and Apple Music, as soon as it launches in 2020, in an effort to gain more subscribers, according to people familiar with this problem.
The latest sign of this strategy is the provision Apple has included in publisher deals that allow the iPhone maker to subscribe to News + subscription services with other paid digital contributions, people say. They asked not to be identified to discuss private deals.
Apple News +, which debuted in March, sells access to dozens of publications for $ 10 a month. It is often referred to as the "Netflix of News". Apple holds about half the monthly subscription price, while magazines and newspapers write the other half.
If Apple sells Apple News + as part of the Apple TV + and Apple Music package, publishers will get less money because the price of the news service is likely to drop, people say.
As the smartphone market stagnates, Apple is seeking growth by selling Internet subscriptions to news, music, video and other content. This month it launches Apple TV + for $ 4.99 a month with star shows including Ennifer Aniston and Asonesson Momoa.
Increasing these contributions can attract more subscribers, as Amazon.com Inc.'s premier service did. Apple is already experimenting with this kind of approach. A free Apple TV + subscription has recently been launched for students who are subscribers of Apple Music. However, the company's plans may change, given how complex deals can be.
Some media executives say the amount they received from Apple News + has been less than expected. One publisher typically earns less than $ 20,000 a month, less revenue than he saw from Texture, a former iteration of the service Apple acquired last year, one person said.
Apple News + offers dozens of magazines, such as New York, GQ and People, as well as major newspapers such as the Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times. Bloomberg Business Owned by Bloomberg LP also participates.
It remains unclear whether publishers see less revenue than they expected because Apple News + has few subscribers, or because their content is not widely read. Publishers share the remaining 50% of revenue based on how much time Apple News + subscribers spend. Apple has not revealed subscriber numbers for Apple News +. The company has recently expanded its services to Australia and the United States.
Advertisers are less interested in Apple News + because Apple's restrictive data policy makes it difficult for marketers to target specific readers, one of the people said. Some publishers would also like Apple to share subscriber data, such as email addresses, that it can use to sell other offerings.
As part of the deal, media companies have the right to withdraw their magazines or newspapers from Apple News + after one year if they are not satisfied with the service, one person said.
The media industry was initially cautious about Apple News + before it started, fearing that their readers might cancel existing subscriptions and purchase their articles at a cheaper price than Apple. For this reason, some have not made all their articles or magazines available. Others, including the New York Times and The Washington Post, did not register.
However, some news executives are pleased with how Apple News + has gone so far.
"The financial results to date have been in line with our expectations," Norm Pearlstein, executive editor of the Los Angeles Times, said in a statement. "We are optimistic that they will continue to grow in the coming months and years."
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