Ap­ple in hol­i­day mode: iPhone 11s, Ap­ple TV+

An­a­lyst: Target is ‘high-end pho­tog­ra­phy, video mar­ket’

The Mercury News - - Front Page - By Rex Crum [email protected]­yare­anews­group.com

Ap­ple on Tues­day kicked off its an­nual hol­i­day sea­son push by introducin­g new iPhones that could test the limits of con­sumers’ spend­ing plans, and pric­ing its Ap­ple TV+ ser­vice at a level meant to un­der­cut other stream­ing TV ri­vals.

In an event held at the Steve Jobs The­ater on Ap­ple Park cam­pus in Cu­per­tino, Ap­ple em­pha­sized the cam­era tech­nolo­gies in each of the three new iPhone models. The least expensive new phone, the iPhone 11, comes with a 6.1-inch screen and a start­ing price tag of $699. For that, cus­tomers will re­ceive a dual-cam­era sys­tem with wide and ul­tra­w­ide cam­era lenses.

How­ever, with its new iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max, Ap­ple put even more fo­cus on pho­tog­ra­phers. Both phones have 12-megapixel wide, tele­photo and ul­tra-wide sys­tems as well as en­hanced tech­nolo­gies to im­prove pho­tos and videos — and ap­peal to pro­fes­sional cus­tomers.

The iPhone 11 Pro has a 5.8-inch screen, and it starts at $999 for 64

gi­ga­bytes of stor­age; the Pro Max ver­sion comes with a 6.5-inch di­ag­o­nal screen and $1,099 sticker price. The Pro Max could go up to a whop­ping $1,449 with a maximum 512 gi­ga­bytes of stor­age in­cluded.

“The ‘pro’ brand­ing is an indi­ca­tion of how se­ri­ous Ap­ple wants to go af­ter the high-end pho­tog­ra­phy and video mar­ket,” said Mark Vena, se­nior an­a­lyst with Moor In­sights & Strat­egy. “Clearly they are en­hanc­ing the po­si­tion­ing of the iPhone

at the high end to go af­ter the pro­fes­sional videog­ra­pher and pho­tog­ra­pher seg­ment.”

Ap­ple said pre­orders for the new iPhones will start at 5 a.m. Friday; they will be avail­able in stores Sept. 20.

Ap­ple’s other ma­jor an­nounce­ment Tues­day of­fered long-awaited de­tails re­gard­ing its Ap­ple TV+ stream­ing TV ser­vice, which the com­pany ini­tially un­veiled in March.

CEO Tim Cook said Ap­ple TV+ will make its de­but

Nov. 1, with some orig­i­nal pro­gram­ming made ex­clu­sively for Ap­ple as well as other TV shows and movies. In a move meant to un­der­cut its com­peti­tors and es­tab­lish a foothold in the stream­ing TV mar­ket, the tech ti­tan is charg­ing just $4.99 a month for Ap­ple TV+. Net­flix, in con­trast, charges $12.99.

Among the orig­i­nal se­ries Ap­ple has teed up are “The Morn­ing Show,” a drama starring Jen­nifer Anis­ton, Reese Wither­spoon and Steve Carell that is set against the back­drop of a TV net­work’s morn­ing news show, and “For All Mankind,” an al­ter­nate-his­tory

se­ries about the space race in which the Soviet Union put a man on the moon be­fore the United States.

Cook said that with Ap­ple TV+, Ap­ple will be pro­duc­ing “sto­ries to be­lieve in, (and) sto­ries with pur­pose.”

In an ef­fort to draw more TV cus­tomers, Cook also said that any­one who buys a new Ap­ple prod­uct — such as an iPhone, iPad, Ap­ple TV set-top box or Mac com­puter — will re­ceive a free year of Ap­ple TV+ ser­vice.

Ap­ple’s move into sub­scrip­tion-based stream­ing TV comes as the mar­ket is get­ting more crowded with ri­vals with deep vaults of

con­tent they al­ready own, and years of ex­pe­ri­ence in TV and movie pro­duc­tion. The most notable new ri­val is Dis­ney, which on Nov. 12 will launch its Dis­ney+ stream­ing ser­vice for $6.99 a month; among its con­tent is Dis­ney-owned ti­tles from Marvel Studios and the li­brary of “Star Wars” films.

Dan Ives, manag­ing di­rec­tor at Wed­bush Se­cu­ri­ties, called the pric­ing of Ap­ple TV+ “a show stop­per and a ma­jor shot across the bow at the likes of Net­flix and Dis­ney, among oth­ers.” He added that while Ap­ple is a rel­a­tive rookie in the stream­ing TV mar­ket, it is en­ter­ing the mar­ket with

the ad­van­tage of hav­ing a deep well of loyal cus­tomers.

“With an in­stalled base of 900 mil­lion ac­tive iPhones world­wide, we be­lieve Cook & Co. have an opportunit­y to gain 100 mil­lion con­sumers on the stream­ing front in the next three to four years,” Ives said.

The launch of Ap­ple TV+ is the lat­est ef­fort by Ap­ple to cap­i­tal­ize on the trend of sub­scrip­tion-based ser­vices that de­liver re­li­able rev­enue to a com­pany on a monthly ba­sis. Dur­ing Ap­ple’s fis­cal third quar­ter, which ended in June, the com­pany re­ported ser­vices sales of $11.46 bil­lion, which

was 12% above the same pe­riod in 2018. Ap­ple has fore­cast ser­vices ac­count­ing for $50 bil­lion in an­nual sales by 2020.

In ad­di­tion to Ap­ple TV+, Ap­ple also said Tues­day that its new Ap­ple Ar­cade gam­ing ser­vice will launch Sept. 19 at $4.99 a month.

For that price, sub­scribers will be able to down­load and play more than 100 games.

Pos­si­bly with an eye to­ward hol­i­day shop­pers, Ap­ple also showed off a new ver­sion of the iPad with a 10.2-inch retina dis­play screen that starts at $329, or $299 for ed­u­ca­tors. It will go on sale Sept. 20.

KARL MONDON — STAFF PHO­TOG­RA­PHER

Ap­ple CEO Tim Cook poses for self­ies Tues­day with at­ten­dees at the com­pany’s an­nual prod­uct re­lease event in Cu­per­tino.

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