In recent years, Apple has been expanding its services to be available on more than just iOS devices. It really started with Apple Music, which is available on Android and other platforms. And now Apple TV Plus has joined in on the fun, being available on many different TV platforms as well as Android and Android TV.
It’s one of the cheaper streaming services out there, and now it’s available on most platforms. So is it worth signing up for? Let’s find out in this Everything You Need To Know.
What is Apple TV Plus?
Apple TV Plus is the premium subscription streaming service from Apple. Which, like everyone else, decided they wanted to get into the streaming game too. It’s a completely ad-free platform. Though there are some promotions for content on the platform, at the beginning of each episode. These can be skipped, though I like these as they help me find out what else to watch on the platform.
The name Apple TV Plus is a big confusing in itself. As there is the Apple TV app, and also the Apple TV set-top box that retails for $149. And honestly, they could have come up with a better name for its streaming service.
Apple TV Plus vs Apple TV app
So there are three versions of Apple TV. There’s the Apple TV set-top box, the Apple TV app and then Apple TV Plus. Here’s what each one does:
- Apple TV: This is a premium set-top box, starting at $149. It allows you to stream all sorts of things from Amazon Prime Video, Showtime, Netflix, Hulu, YouTube TV and much more. There is currently two models available, one that is in HD and then a 4K model. both of which are also available in 32GB and 64GB sizes.
- Apple TV app: Now the Apple TV app that is available on every platform is a free app that is basically a hub for content from various streaming services. Think of it as Google TV, or Fire TV.
- Apple TV Plus: This is a subscription service, that has Apple Originals. These are series and films that are produced by and/or for Apple. They do not license any content, yet. Which explains why their service has so few options right now.
How much does it cost?
Apple TV Plus is actually pretty inexpensive. It’s just $4.99 per month, or $49.99 per year in the US. And this can be shared with everyone on your family sharing account at this price. So even though the library is pretty small right now, it is still worth getting. Here’s the pricing in some other countries:
- USA: $4.99/month, $49.99/year
- Canada: $5.99/month
- UK: £4.99/month
- Europe: €4.99/month
- India: Rs. 99/month
- Australia: A$7.99/month
Where is it available?
Apple TV Plus is available in over 100 countries right now. Which is pretty impressive, as it launched in 107 countries, and didn’t expand later on. Here’s the full list.
- Antigua and Barbuda
- British Virgin Islands
- Cape Verde
- Cayman Islands
- Costa Rica
- Czech Republic
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- The Gambia
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand
- Saudi Arabia
- South Africa
- Sri Lanka
- St. Kitts and Nevis
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
How can I sign up?
To sign up for Apple TV Plus, you can simply open the Apple TV app on your iPhone, iPad or Mac. Or you can head to this site to sign up. Just tap on the “Start Free Trial” button to get started. It’ll ask you to sign into your Apple account, and if you don’t have one, you’ll need to create one. It’ll of course ask for your credit card information, so it can charge you after the free trial is over with.
What devices are compatible?
Apple TV Plus is available within the Apple TV app across all devices that have the app. At launch, it was only available on iPad, iPhone, Mac and Apple TV. But Apple has since decided to launch it on other platforms. Apple realized, that even though they have a huge market share in the US, they are going to need to make it available to Android users int he US and around the world. So they did just that.
Here’s all of the devices compatible with Apple TV Plus:
- Apple TV (4K, HD, and 3rd generation)
- Roku (most models)
- Amazon Fire TV (most models)
- Google TV (with Chromecast)
- Samsung Smart TVs (2018 or newer)
- Sony Smart TVs
- Vizio Smart TVs
- LG Smart TVs (2019 or newer)
- Mac (macOS Catalina 10.15 or higher)
- PC (browser only)
- Android (browser only)
- Android TV (version 8 or higher)
- PlayStation 4
- PlayStation 5
- Xbox One
- Xbox Series X
- Xbox Series S
What movies and TV shows are available on Apple TV Plus?
Here’s the big question. What content is available on Apple TV Plus? Remember that Apple TV Plus does not license content from other studios – which would put them in a bidding war with the other streaming services, and likely raise prices. So all of the content on Apple TV Plus is commissioned by Apple themselves. And that also means that the content won’t leave Apple TV Plus, unless they give up on the service like they did Ping.
Here are a few of the bigger shows and movies available on Apple TV Plus:
- The Morning Show: An unapologetically candid drama that looks at the modern workplace through the lens of the people who help wake America up, pulling back the curtain on early morning TV.
- Ted Lasso: An American football coach is hired to manage a British soccer team; what he lacks in knowledge, he makes up for in optimism, determination and biscuits.
- Severance: Mark leads a team of office workers whose memories have been surgically divided between their work and personal lives; when a mysterious colleague appears outside of work, it begins a journey to discover the truth about their jobs.
- Wecrashed: The love story at the centre of the rise and fall of one of the world’s most valuable startups. WeWork grows from a single co-working space into a global brand worth $47 billion in under a decade. Then, in less than a year, its valuation plummets.
- Central Park: An animated series with a voice cast that includes Josh Gad and Kristen Bell.
- Among many others.
Apple TV Plus launched just ahead of the pandemic in 2020, which forced a lot of studios to close down for many months as the lock down around the world happened. So there wasn’t alot of content on Apple TV Plus for a while. But now, they are releasing quite a bit of content. Including a couple new documentaries every single week. Docuseries like “They Call Me Magic” and “The Long Game: Bigger Than Basketball” are debuting this Friday on Apple TV Plus.
So while the library is still quite small compared to say Netflix or HBO MAX, it is growing, and almost all of the content is very popular. Which shows that Apple is doing the right thing here. Which is providing and investing in content that people actually want to see – unlike Netflix.
Major League Baseball on Apple TV Plus
Earlier this year, Apple announced that it has gained the rights to show some MLB games on Apple TV Plus this year. For the 2022 season, it will be airing MLB games on Friday nights throughout the entire season. These games will be broadcast in US, Canada, Australia, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and South Korea, with more countries to be added later.
Apple TV Plus is also going to launch a 24/7 channel that will feature MLB news, highlights, game replays, classic games and much more. And there will be on-demand MLB programming available too.
Apple has said that these games are available at no additional cost, which likely means that they will charge more for these sports in the future. That shouldn’t come as a surprise, considering how expensive sports rights are.
Apple TV Channels
Channels aren’t actually part of the streaming service, but they are in the Apple TV app. It’s a lot like Google TV. Where you can add your subscriptions and even subscribe through Apple TV – making it easier to pause or cancel services. It lets you consolidate all of your streaming services into a single app – the Apple TV app. It’s really what the Google TV app wishes it was.
However, not all streaming services are compatible with the Apple TV app, here’s the full list:
- Acorn TV
- A&E Crime Central
- Allblk (formerly Urban Movie Channel)
- AMC Plus
- Apple TV Plus
- Arrow Video Channel
- Bet Plus
- BFIPlayer Classics
- CBS All Access
- CollegeHumor Dropout
- Comedy Central Now
- Eros Now Select
- Hallmark Movies Now
- HBO (limited)
- History Vault
- IFC Films Unlimited
- Lifetime Movie Club
- Moonbug Kids
- MTV Hits
- Out TV
- Paramount Plus
- PBS Living
- Smithsonian Channel Plus
- Sundance Now
- The Great Courses Signature Collection
- Up Faith & Family
Should I sign up for Apple TV Plus?
It’s probably worth signing up for Apple TV Plus. The amount of great content it already has, and is adding, for just $5 is pretty impressive. And makes it the best value in streaming today. It would be nice for Apple TV Plus to add some licensed content from other studios, but that does help keep the price down, and keeps its subscribers on the platform too.
While the name isn’t great and can be confusing, embedding it within the Apple TV app which iOS users already use for other things, is genius. It means that users can stream Apple TV Plus shows without even really thinking about it. And with it being just $5, many will sign up, stream occasionally and never think about needing to cancel it.