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Apple plans to sell video subscriptions through its TV app

10 May 2018

Apple will soon let you subscribe to popular streaming services from within its dedicated TV application, according to a new report.

Bloomberg revealed Thursday that Apple is reinventing cable TV by selling subscriptions to video streaming services directly through its TV app. For example, you can subscribe to Netflix directly from the streaming video service through its website (and Apple gets no cut), or subscribe through Netflix's app using your Apple ID (which allows Apple to take a percentage).

Apple is following the footsteps of competitor Amazon with plans to amalgamate all of its TV subscriptions into its Apple TV app. But then Apple sends customers outside its app to buy access to those channels or watch shows. Much of that content can't be viewed without a paid subscription to a third-party service. Sales from services climbed 31 percent in the most recent quarter, reaching a record $9.2 billion.

Apple has made no public comment on the news.

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Apple is also one of the biggest sellers of movies and TV shows thanks to iTunes, but it has largely missed out on the wave of on-demand services now replacing the online sale of individual titles. Netflix and YouTube (owned by rival Alphabet), operate the two largest online video services in the world outside of China.

This boosts the Apple TV app on various devices like iPads and iPhones, Bloomberg says this would also give the company another way for the tech giant to boost its service business.

If Apple were to push through with its plan, the TV app will become the ultimate hub for users to find and stream content. Sales of its Apple TV box meanwhile trail those of rivals including Roku, Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV in the US.

Apple plans to sell video subscriptions through its TV app