Last updated on Jan 20, 2020

Apple TV+ Review

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Apple TV+

Pros

  • Affordable monthly plan
  • Weekly episode releases
  • Intuitive interface

Cons

  • Not available on Android devices
  • Small title launch lineup
  • Short free trial period

Apple TV+ Review

Not to be confused with Apple TV, Apple TV+ is a streaming service and the latest addition to the host of options currently available. The recently launched streaming service has earned mixed reviews, but it comes with several standout features and exclusive content to draw in viewers. And Apple is offering all of this for the price of $4.99 per month, undercutting competitors like Hulu and Netflix. The new Apple streaming service even lets up to six family members share one account.

Unlike Netflix and other competitors, Apple TV+ releases new episodes weekly, so viewers do not have to wait months for bulk episode releases.

The initial Apple TV+ show lineup includes big names like Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Jason Momoa, and Steve Carell. And with Apple reportedly spending $6 billion to create original shows and movies, expect to see more original content soon, such as a reboot of the “Amazing Stories” anthology series from Steven Spielberg.

Apple TV+ Packages at a Glance

Apple TV+ Apple TV+ with Apple device purchase Apple TV+ with Student Apple Music plan
Price $4.99/mo. Free for 1 year, then $4.99/mo. Free with Apple Music subscription
Contract length Monthly 1 year Monthly (length of music subscription)
Family sharing available Yes – Up to 6 Yes – Up to 6 Yes – Up to 6
Offline viewing Yes Yes Yes

How We Evaluated Apple TV+

The digital streaming industry has seen a dramatic transformation over the past few years, with new streaming platforms and services popping up every year. Each of these services is vying for the top position with an ever-expanding content library and competitive subscription plans.

Apple TV+ has a lot of catching up to do, as viewers already have several established services to choose from. Even if it costs much less than other streaming services, Apple will need to seriously enhance its content library to keep up — competing services have thousands of shows and movies available for viewers.

Keeping all this in mind, we assessed the service’s features, content library, and pricing structure to find out how it stacks up against its top competitors.

Apple TV+ vs. Other Video Streaming Services

Apple TV+
Netflix
Hulu
Amazon Prime Video
Starting monthly price
$4.99/mo.
$8.99/mo.
$5.99/mo.
$8.99/mo.
Free trial length
7 days
30 days
30 days
30 days
Content library size
12+ titles
5,000+ titles
Thousands of titles (exact number not specified)
17,000+ titles
Offline viewing
Yes
Yes
Depends on plan
Yes

Key Apple TV+ Considerations

Fresh and growing content library

Since it is just getting started, the Apple TV+ content library is still bare-bones compared to more established competitors’. However, with a bunch of original Apple TV+ shows like “Dickinson,” “The Morning Show,” and “See,” viewers can watch fresh content that isn’t available anywhere else.

The Apple streaming service continues to expand its content library with original Apple TV+ movies and shows such as “Truth Be Told,” “Servant,” and the upcoming “The Banker.” That said, viewers who want to watch specific movies and shows besides Apple TV+ originals will have to look somewhere else.

Competitive pricing and attractive Apple TV+ deals

At $4.99 per month, Apple TV+’s price is among the most affordable out there. It is $4 per month cheaper than both the basic Netflix and entry-level Amazon Prime Video plans. Viewers even have the option to share access with up to six other viewers, thanks to Family Sharing. This makes the service even more appealing than its more established competitors that have stricter access limitations.

There are a few attractive Apple TV+ deals for new Apple device owners and subscribers of the Apple Music Student Plan. Viewers have to sign up for the service within three months of purchasing a new Apple device to qualify for the free year of streaming. Under the Apple Music Student Plan, viewers get access to Apple TV+ as long as the subscription is valid.

Device limitations

Although viewers can access Apple TV+ using several devices, the service is not available for Android users. Those who regularly use Android phones and tablets to stream videos might want to consider other options with wider device compatibility.

Short trial period

While most streaming services offer a free 30-day trial, Apple TV+ only gives viewers seven days to try things out. The short trial period and limited content selection could make it difficult for some to make an informed decision about the service.

The Bottom Line

Cost-effectiveness is the key highlight of the Apple TV+ streaming service, making it ideal for those on the lookout for original content at an affordable price. Given the service’s device compatibility limitations and still-expanding content library, those who regularly use Android devices or have specific content interests may want to consider a more established streaming service.

About the Authors

Jacqueline Zote

Jacqueline Zote Contributing Writer

Jacqueline Zote is a digital marketing and entertainment writer who makes regular contributions to Sprout Social and Recreation Insider. Her interests range from pop culture and mythology to social activism. When she’s not writing, she goes on food adventures and binges on crime drama. Her short fiction has been published by HarperCollins Publishers and Zubaan Books.