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What is Apple TV+?

By Yvette Fletcher

Apple now offers its own film and TV streaming service - but can it compete with more established names like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video?

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Apple has joined the ranks of Amazon and Netflix, offering its new subscription streaming service – Apple TV+.

The focus of Apple TV+ is exclusive original content, so it offers films and television shows you can’t watch anywhere else. But is it worth committing to yet another subscription? We’ll walk you through what you can expect from the service to help you decide.

Prefer the sound of a combined TV and broadband deal? Find out how all of the major providers compare by reading our round up of the best and worst TV and broadband providers.

What is Apple TV+?

Apple has entered the increasingly competitive television and film streaming market with its own service, Apple TV+. But unlike most other services, it doesn’t offer any historical content – Apple TV+ is based around new exclusive content that’s been created just for the service.

What's the difference between Apple TV and Apple TV+?

Apple TV+ is a paid-for streaming service, while Apple TV is a device that you can connect to your television and use to stream content from a range of services including YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and, of course, Apple TV+.

Tempted by an Apple TV? Find out how it compares to other streaming devices using our internet TV box reviews.

How much does Apple TV+ cost?

Subscriptions are priced at £4.99 a month after a seven-day free trial, making it one of the cheapest major paid-for streaming services currently available in the UK. See how this compares to the cost of services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video using our comparison of TV streaming services.

Apple also sometimes offers Apple TV+ for free – those who have recently purchased an Apple TV, iPad, iPhone or Mac have been given a year of the service for free, though Apple has said this offer is for a limited time.

What can I watch on Apple TV+?

The offering from Apple TV+ isn’t as comprehensive as you’ll find with the likes of Netflix or Amazon Prime Video  – you get access to exclusive Apple content but not the back catalogue of films and series on offer from other streaming services.

While the initial choice of content on Apple TV+ has been fairly limited, it’s impressed so far – Apple exclusive The Morning Show picked up three Golden Globe Award nominations, for example.  Apple is reportedly investing $1 billion in new content, and continues to attract big Hollywood names such as Jennifer Aniston and Steven Spielberg.

Does Apple TV+ have films?

Yes – while its initial focus has primarily been on television series, Apple TV+ also offers some feature films and feature-length documentaries.

Do you need a Mac to watch Apple TV+?

It’s possible to watch Apple TV+ on non-Apple devices. It can be accessed on some LG, Samsung and Sony smart TVs, plus Roku streaming devices. It can also be accessed via a web browser on PCs and Android devices.

But if you are into Apple products, there’s an array of ways you can access Apple TV+ - the app can be used on iPhone, iPad, iPod and on the Mac, as well as via Apple TV streaming boxes. 

Can you download Apple TV+ shows to watch offline?

Yes – but only on certain devices. While Apple TV+ doesn’t seem to limit the number of devices you can download shows on, it currently isn’t possible to download content using an Apple TV box or via a web browser.

If you want to download shows for offline viewing, you’ll need to do this on your phone, tablet or Mac.

How many people can watch Apple TV+ at once?

Apple TV+ allows a generous six simultaneous streams at once – by comparison, even the priciest Netflix subscription only allows for four simultaneous streams, while Amazon Prime Video allows for just two.

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