By Phillip Swann
TV Answer Man, @tvanswerman

Reader Question

TV Answer Man, I just heard that Apple TV Plus is raising prices again. Can you explain this to me? Apple has more money than God! Why on earth do they need to raise prices? — Frank, Sacramento, California.
Frank, welcome to television in the modern age, a time when the only thing you can guarantee is that your subscription fee will increase at least once a year. Apple today did announce that it’s raising the price of its Apple TV+ streaming service from $6.99 a month to $9.99 a month, effective immediately for new subscribers and for existing subs within 30 days. The annual price for an Apple TV+ sub will increase from $69.99 to $99.99.

Why Is Apple Raising Apple TV+ Prices?

A company’s net worth, which, of course, is astronomical for Apple, does not matter here. Every company, regardless of its cash value, requires a business to run on its own merits. And in today’s competitive streaming industry, raising prices has become necessary to offset the rising cost of program acquisition and creation. For example, Apple spent more than $200 million on Martin Scorsese’s new movie, Killers of the Flower Moon, which will be available on Apple TV+ sometime in the next few months. Projects like that and others have forced Apple to raise prices now, and in October 2022 when it bumped the monthly price of Apple TV+ from $4.99 a month to $6.99 a month.

“Since launching four years ago, Apple TV+ has made history for streaming services by crossing major milestones in a short span of time, thanks to its extensive selection of award-winning and broadly acclaimed series, feature films, documentaries, and kids and family entertainment,” Apple said in a statement today explaining the cost increase. The company also raised prices on some other services including Apple News+.

Will Other Streamers Now Raise Prices?

Despite the rush to streaming from companies such as Apple, Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery and others, the business has yet to become profitable. So executives are raising prices, cutting programming and shedding workers in an effort to reverse that. And the trend is unlikely to change. Disney, Netflix and Hulu have also raised prices recently and there will be more rate hikes to come.

Frank, hope that helps. Happy viewing and stay safe!

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— Phillip Swann