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Apple TV+ subscription service soft-launches November 1 for $4.99/mo

CUPERTINO, Calif.—Apple’s massive Tuesday product event saw CEO Tim Cook announce a release date for the Apple TV+ streaming subscription service: November 1. Starting that day, anyone who can access the Apple TV app on their devices can begin subscribing for $4.99/month.

The announcement came with a surprising amount of ambiguity in what may be most accurately described as a “soft launch” on November 1. “The first shows will be available on November 1, and we’ll be adding more Apple Originals every month, in over 100 countries at launch,” Cook told the Cupertino audience. The CEO also revealed that customers who purchase certain Apple hardware (Cook shouted out the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV) will receive one year of Apple TV+ for free.

Cook did not clarify exactly which shows will count in that “first” pool, not even after introducing a world-premiere trailer for the Jason Momoa series See (think Hunger Games with a magical-realism plot about a blind race of people having children who can see). Previously, Apple has previewed several other original series, such as a newscast comedy with Jennifer Aniston and Steve Carell and the alternative Moon landing history series For All Mankind from Battlestar Galactica creator Ronald D. Moore. The last major Apple TV event included surprise cameos from Apple TV+ showrunners Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg (and, of course, Big Bird).

It’s possible that Apple’s push to get Apple TV+ up and running in a “soft-launch” state has something to do with the family-friendly Disney+ streaming service launching soon after, on November 12, with a massive library of Marvel, Star Wars, and Disney originals for $6.99/month. (Disney will also offer the service as part of a bundle with ESPN+ and Hulu for $12.99/month.)

Listing image by Apple

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