But then, how does it continue to grow if it can’t sell you a new iPhone every year? It’s by shifting to a service model- something Apple has already acknowledged in investor calls. What started with iCloud and Apple Music is now continuing with Apple News Plus, Apple TV Plus and Apple Arcade.
The pricing for Apple News Plus was already disclosed at $9.99 per month, but we were unaware of the pricing for Apple TV Plus and Apple Arcade until the iPhone 11 launch event, each of which is now set at $4.99 (AED 19.99) per month. To me, that was the biggest news from the launch event.
Apple has definitely priced these services to sell and I think Apple TV Plus would have quite a few takers at that price. To make it even more lucrative, Apple is giving one year subscription of Apple TV Plus free with the purchase of any new iPhone, iPad, Mac or Apple TV.
It's all about software and services
Software and services are the most important areas in Apple's next era of growth and we will see it get more aggressive on these fronts. There’s no doubt that Apple will continue releasing new hardware but the primary aim for these devices will be to provide an unmatched experience for its software and services - quite the opposite for the company that made software so it could sell hardware.
In fact, it might only be a matter of time before Apple starts selling products as a service. We’ve already gotten hints on an upcoming augmented reality device referenced as StarBoard in iOS 13 and the technology needed to power such devices will rapidly evolve year after year.
It could make sense for Apple to test this AR kit as a service and move its entire customer base to a new platform with every iteration. This would eliminate platform fragmentation completely and provide every user of that product the best experience Apple can develop.