Time to Read Up
Through a livestream hosted by CEO Tim Cook, audiences were introduced to Apple News+, an extension of the already popular Apple News. Apple News+ will bring over 300 magazines to users, covering topics like entertainment, news, politics and travel.
Users will receive personalized news feeds based on their previous reading habits. Among the app’s primary offerings are the live covers that will feature moving images and the “today tab,” which offers all the latest and most recent articles for users to examine.
Apple News+ will also provide access to top newspapers including The Los Angeles Times and The Wall Street Journal. The app is being launched in both the U.S. and Canada and will be available in Australia and the U.K. later this year.
A New Way to Pay
The second announcement involves Apple Pay, which according to Cooke, is on track to surpass one billion transactions in 2019. Apple Pay is releasing a new titanium credit card designed to offer quick cash back and zero fees.
Users can sign up using their phones and garner approvals in mere minutes. The card categorizes everything one spends and provides notifications regarding how much money is being spent, what it’s being used for, and when upcoming payments are due. Users receive daily cash back granted they continue to use their cards for all their purchases, and there are no fees for international buys, over-limit spending or missed payments.
Apple is partnering with banking giant Goldman Sachs, which will issue the new cards this coming summer. The cards are numberless and contain no CVVs or signatures. Purchases are instead verified through touch ID and face ID for customers.
Heads Up, Gamers
Third came an announcement regarding the Apple App Store, which Cooke claims is visited by more than half-a-billion customers each week. He says the most popular apps revolve around games, which has sparked the creation of the new Apple Arcade.
The service, which will be available this fall, features over 100 new games not available on any other platform. Users subscribed to the service will have access to ongoing additions and new games each month. They can also engage in a family-sharing plan at no extra charge. The games will feature work from some of the largest game-makers working today, including Sega, Lego and Konami.
The New Television Wave
Last came an announcement regarding Apple TV. Execs are creating a simpler branch of Apple TV that allows users to select only the channels and movies they want to see. Instead of paying the standard subscription for all available videos and channels, customers can instead pay less by selecting only specific channels and material. Streaming content will also be presented ad-free.
The Apple TV app will be available for Mac computers this fall. It is also being implemented onto smart televisions, as well as Roku and Amazon. Apple TV is also providing new content for users including a science-fiction anthology series from director Steven Spielberg, and a program called “The Morning Show,” starring Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon.
It’s unclear if these additions will hold any positive bearings for the company. Apple stocks have been slowly falling since late 2018, and are again down by nearly three points at press time.