A few thoughts on the Apple event

by Volker Weber


This is a tough one for tech journalists. Apple opens a new chapter and you cannot interpolate from the past. First the news:

Pricing for everything besides News+ will be announced when available. Some thoughts:


Apple TV+ will be available worldwide. A bundle with Music, Arcade and maybe iCloud would be very appealing to me.

Martin Kirchler, 2019-03-25

Ich hoffe auch das tv+ und Arcade als bundle mit Music (und iCloud) nach Deutschland kommen. Ich denke der eigene content wird direkt weltweit ausgeliefert und bei Serien, Filmen und spielen sollte das ja kein Problem sein.

Matthias Welling , 2019-03-25

This is by no means Apple specific, but the emphasis put on curated content in this Keynote left me puzzled. It was mentioned over and over again.

I know I don’t HAVE to subscribe to any of it, but this acceptance of infantilization bothers me nonetheless.

Alex Martin, 2019-03-25

Amazon Prime indeed is available in the TV app. At least it is on my Phone and iPad. You cannot subscribe to it there though.

Christian Gut, 2019-03-25

Thank you. Corrected.

Volker Weber, 2019-03-25

What really would make it a killer deal is if Apple would add reliable, unlimited and fast enough WiFi to the deal. I would pay some for it.

Axel Seifried, 2019-03-26

ACK for AppleCard, it was the highlight. Can become a game changer. The rest is not very thrilling, only Apple-versions of already existing services.

Sami Bahri, 2019-03-26

Apple Channels and Apple+ have both been advertised as 100+ Countries. So most probably both in Germany too.

But I wouldn't bet on HBO availability in Germany. I assume the included channels will differ regionally.

Would have liked to see News+ here in Germany too but most probably this is more difficult to achieve than Apple Pay :-(

Harald Gärttner, 2019-03-26

Das Kreditkarten-Ding ist interessant. Apple wird die nächste Bank mit angeschlossenem Elektronik-Konzern. :-) Als nächstes bitte Versicherungen. Ich mag die Idee, diese angestaubte und manchmal etwas "shady" Welt durcheinander zu wirbeln.
News+ könnte interessant sein, ich bezweifle aber, daß das in D zeitnah funktioniert.
tv+ und Arcade sind mir egal und solange sie beim Bewegtbild nicht Fantastrilliarden Geld reinwerfen, wird es bestimmt schwer, dort etwas zu reißen.
Wo ist Ping+?

Martin Kautz, 2019-03-26

Ach ja, das Umstellen auf die Region "Vereinigte Staten" bringt zwar die News App zum Vorschein (inkl. News+ wenn man 12.2 installiert hat), aber hilft wie erwartet nichts: Der Freimonat ist schon ein Kauf (also Abo) und das nimmt er nicht an weil das mit deutschen Apple-ID's nicht geht.

Wer zufällig irgendwo eine US Apple-ID rumliegen hat, das könnte gehen.

Allerdings bleibt die App nicht (so wie es damals mit der Boon App aus Frankreich war). Schaltet man zurück auf die Deutsche Region verschwindet auch die News App wieder.

Harald Gärttner, 2019-03-26

Mit US-Apple-iD geht das News+ Abo, es darf aber nicht ein anderer Apple-Abo-Dienst auf demselben Gerät mit deutscher ID laufen. Also man nimmt am Besten ein zweites Device und meldet sich dort nur mit seiner US-ID an.

Karl Heindel, 2019-03-26

My expectations about the event have been very low and I have to admit that this has been delivered.

There is obviously a shift of focus. In previous years Apple was proud about their products. They presented the products in exact that way (proud) which even included explanations why these products are so extraordinary.
Last week we have seen a drastic shift away from that. A decent number of hardware products have been updated, some of these significantly. For some reason, Apple did give them the same love as a sofa that someone has left on the sidewalk. If you walk by, you will see that sofa and can decide to pick it up.

Tim Cooks Apple also does not care too much about internationalization. We still do not have Apple News in Germany (also no public transportation in Apple maps). It doesn't feel that Apple is pushing for a release into non English speaking regions.

Well, and there is the new TV+ product. I think that is so much different from everything else Apple has done before. This is the first service that does not require Apple Hardware. No iPhone, no iPad, no Macbook and even no AppleTV required for this service. You simply can step into an electronic marked grab a Samsung TV or wait for a software update of your existing Smart TV to use this service. I can't tell but it seams that Apple thinks that this TV+ product has a bigger potential than the hardware business. They even do not care about that shiny hardware-software-services integration that have been presented at the beginning, when it comes to TV+.

We all will see how this works out, but for me it looks like that Apple is considering that the growth in hardware will slow down and they are trying to compensate that with services.

Finally the credit card. I barely understand the impact of that product for the US marked. Also, I cannot see how this product will be shaped for the German credit card marked which is very different from the US marked. I am also wondering if Goldman Sachs will partner with Apple for international markets. For me that product looked promising, but I would not bet that we can get it in Germany anyway soon.

Dominique Roller, 2019-03-26

"Goldman Sachs says it is ‘exploring international opportunities’ to launch Apple Card outside the US in the future"

So, at least not anytime soon ;-)

Harald Gärttner, 2019-03-26

Kann man eine (zusätzliche) amerikanische Apple ID Teil seiner deutsche Familie werden lassen? Könnte man so News+ mit anderen teilen?

Torsten Hoffmann, 2019-03-26

News+ sounds like the Spotify-cation of journalism, as Apple hammers the final nail into the coffin of quality writing.

Investigation, research, and good quality writing cost money. If people barely pay for it, and Apple and co. skim off what revenue there is, it's a dismal outlook for journalists and other content creators. We've already seen this happen with some of the software world, and certainly in the music world. It's all very sad.

Ben Poole, 2019-03-26

Ben, that’s what’s used to be the argument against music streaming services. Yet, they started to actually grow the revenue overall.

Magazine sales are on a constant decline. Here in Germany, one can pick up a subscription for a few bucks a year at most, despite the sticker price. These flat rate models are a way to save at least some of the businesses.

Jochen Schug, 2019-03-26

Apple Arcade is more than just indie developers - some of them are pretty large in terms of game developer studios. and the lego properties are a big deal in terms of licensing cost. What seems indie about it is that the games are mostly new properties. Most consoles launch with some version of the big sellers - Call of Duty, Madden, FIFA, etc.

For me, the two big questions unanswered are 1) is apple becoming a game publisher and subsidizing part of the development cost and 2) are these games in the subscription exclusives (iOS only) or will they show up on PC and/or console? If the answer to the first question is yes, than the answer to the second question is yes for those games for sure. Exclusives are how the consoles grow the player base - Zelda and Mario being only on Nintendo hardware sells Nintendo hardware.

I was also shocked they didn't talk about a controller, like google did last week. Playing games on a TV or mac will require a controller. Seems like the perfect place for Apple to make more money on a required hardware item.

John Head, 2019-03-26

Jochen: the streaming music model is appalling for musicians. The revenue has grown for sure, but they're not seeing it.

Ben Poole, 2019-03-26

@Torsten Hoffmann: Wer das versucht, reist das ganze WebObjects-Gedankengebäude in Cupertino ein! Unhandled edge case.

Martin Kautz, 2019-03-26

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