Mar 25, 2019 - Technology

The great Apple bundle

iphone as a gift illustration

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

You could see in Apple's big hullabaloo today a glimpse of the great bundles of the future, built around phones instead of televisions.

Take a look at the startling breadth of the emerging Apple suite of subscription offerings:

  • What you read: Apple News+ ($9.99/month)
  • What you watch: Apple TV+ (A new TV app that also features a variety of skinny bundle options at $9.99 each, as well as original programming from talent like Steven Spielberg, Reese Witherspoon, Alfre Woodard and Kumail Nanjiani.)
  • What you listen to: Apple Music ($9.99/month)
  • What you play: Apple Arcade (price TBD)
  • How you pay: Apple Card, a new credit card that uses Apple Pay

The big picture: This isn't exactly like Amazon Prime, where you pay a big yearly cost in exchange for a huge array of offerings. But it appears to be a step in that direction, with hardcore Apple users now easily able to pay the cost of a subsidized old iPhone in annual subscriptions alone.

Between the lines: The Apple Card picked up the most instant buzz.

  • Apple partnered with Goldman Sachs and Mastercard and says the former will not sell or share user data to third-party marketers and advertisers.
  • The card comes with a rewards program, which collects rewards in the form of cash instead of points. Users can also get 2% of their spending via Apple Pay back on a daily basis and 3% on purchases from Apple.
  • The card has no fees, and it comes with low interest rates. It will be available this summer.
  • Apple Pay is adding public transit payments for its first U.S. cities — Portland, Chicago and New York. It's already available in a number of cities in other countries.

The bottom line: You get what you pay for, particularly on privacy. That's in cash for Apple, and data for Google.

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