Apple News Plus struggles to add more readers, report says

The $9.99 per month subscription, offering access to more than 300 magazines and newspapers, is part of Apple's services effort.

Ian Sherr Contributor and Former Editor at Large / News
Ian Sherr (he/him/his) grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, so he's always had a connection to the tech world. As an editor at large at CNET, he wrote about Apple, Microsoft, VR, video games and internet troubles. Aside from writing, he tinkers with tech at home, is a longtime fencer -- the kind with swords -- and began woodworking during the pandemic.
Ian Sherr
2 min read
Apple News

Apple News Plus, the company's $9.99 per month subscription service, appeared to start strong when it launched in March. But since then, a report indicates, Apple has struggled to add more readers.

Apple reportedly tallied 200,000 readers within days of launching Apple News Plus, the first in a new wave of services the company announced earlier this year. The goal, Apple said, wasn't just to sell us all iPhones, iPads, Mac computers, Apple Watches, AirPods and all sorts of other gizmos, it would also start aggregating stuff to do on them too. 

We could watch TV shows and documentaries led by stars like Jennifer Anniston, Reese Witherspoon and Oprah with Apple TV Plus, for $4.99 per month. We could play more than a hundred video games through the $4.99 Apple Arcade. And we could read Apple News Plus.

But a report from CNBC says Apple didn't "materially" add more readers to Apple News Plus after its launch, despite offering access to the likes of The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, Esquire and CNET. Apple hasn't published subscriber numbers itself, nor did it respond to a request for comment on CNBC's story. 

The company has been promoting Apple News Plus in its Apple News app, which is included in every new iPhone, iPad and Mac computer. It's also used the App Store to promote Apple Arcade since Arcade's launch in September, and the Apple TV app to promote Apple TV Plus since its launch a couple of weeks ago.

Apple has ways it can make its services even more attractive. Bloomberg reported that Apple TV Plus and Apple News Plus may be bundled together next year. The bundle may even include Apple Music, the news organization reported. So far, Apple hasn't commented on that either.