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The cheapest way to get Apple TV Plus for free

Apple is giving away one year of the streaming service with the purchase of a new device. These are your rock-bottom options.

Apple TV Plus is offering a free year to those who purchase certain new devices. 

If you thought the recent Disney Plus deal was good, get a load of this: Apple is offering a free year of its new Apple TV Plus streaming service with the purchase of a new -- or refurbished -- iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Mac or iPod Touch ($150 at Amazon). As we now know, Apple TV Plus will cost $4.99 a month, so this is a $60 freebie. That kind of largesse is pretty rare coming from Apple.

Why the generosity? Because even at $5 per month, the company is probably going to have a hard time attracting subscribers to its nascent service. Unlike Disney Plus, which will debut in November with an embarrassment of movie and TV riches, Apple TV Plus currently has just nine titles lined up. All originals, all pretty high-profile, but still.

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We can debate the merits and future of Apple TV Plus later. Right now, you might be wondering how little you can spend to score that free year. First thing you should know: The offer is "not restricted to any specific sales channel," meaning it doesn't matter where you buy your eligible device. As long as it's activated from today forward, it should net you the free subscription once Apple TV Plus launches Nov. 1.

The least expensive devices in Apple's eligible-device lineup are the Apple TV and iPod Touch, followed by the iPad. And the cheapest deals on these items are typically found in the Refurbished section of Apple's online store. As you may know, this section is home to a wide range of refurbished products, many of which are quite literally good as new (right down to the battery and warranty).

Here, then, are the three cheapest free-Apple-TV-Plus-eligible options. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page.

Make no mistake: I'm not saying you should buy any of these devices just to get free Apple TV Plus. But if there's a new device in your future anyway, you might as well take advantage of this offer. (Apple hasn't yet announced an end date.)

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