In March, leaker analyst Mark Gurman claimed that Apple was preparing to launch a new iPhone subscription service, where customers would pay a fixed monthly recurring fee to access the company’s hardware. This rumor resurfaced shortly before the Far Out event last week, with Gurman appearing to imply that the service could be announced on September 7… but in the end it didn’t show up.
Gurman hasn’t given up on the subscription service, though, and in his latest Power On newsletter, he emphasizes that the project is still coming, possibly this year: “Indeed, the company is still working on a hardware subscription service that will integrate with its Apple One bundle. ” He says Apple is actively testing the service and expects it to launch later this year or next year.
Since no announcements have been made, we’re not sure how the subscription service would work. It will likely be similar to the iPhone upgrade program, but Gurman believes it will involve an ongoing fixed monthly fee rather than simply dividing the price of the hardware over the payment period. He also says that Apple has “discussed” the possibility of allowing subscribers to switch to new hardware when new models are released.
It made sense for the company to unveil the new service at the iPhone 14 event, as it ties in with the iPhones, but Gurman says the service was left out to “reduce launch day complexity.” A launch later this year could boost sales ahead of the important Christmas shopping season and boost Apple One subscribers.