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Published on August 9th, 2018 | by Brad Gibson

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Verizon to bundle free Apple Music; hints at future video offerings with Apple

Verizon and Apple announced Wednesday an exclusive partnership which gives Verizon Unlimited customers six months of Apple Music for free with full access through Apple TV and gave subtle indications Apple might be its rumored partner for 5G TV content later this year.

The offer will be available to new and current Verizon Unlimited customers starting Thursday, August 16. Once registered, Verizon customers will have full access to Apple Music for six months – double the three-month trial period Apple gives its own customers. After six months, the subscription will be priced at $9.99 per month, the standard cost for an Apple Music subscription.

According to Verizon, current Apple Music subscribers will get the same six months of free service as new subscribers, but will have to cancel and reactivate their Apple Music subscriptions if they want to continue using the service.

Verizon offers three unlimited plans, priced starting at $75 for a single line. All plans offer unlimited talk, text and LTE data, but offer varying levels of video quality and mobile hotspot limits.

The cheapest Go Unlimited plan includes 480p video streaming and unlimited mobile hotspot access at 600 kilobits per second up to a high-end plan of 720p video streaming with 20GB of LTE hotspot data a month. 

Verizon’s cheapest plan offers unlimited LTE data, but customers could be throttled at times of peak usage. The Beyond Unlimited plan lets customers use 22GB of LTE data before throttling, while the Above Unlimited plan provides customers with 75GB of unlimited LTE data before throttling kicks in at times of high network congestion. 

Verizon said it will be providing more information about the partnership with Apple Music on its website on August 16.

More hints of Apple video on Verizon 5G TV service

In the statement on the music offer, Verizon gave additional clues that the relationship with Apple moving forward will be more than just free music. 

“This first-of-its-kind offer is just the first step in an exclusive partnership with Apple,” said Angie Klein, vice president of marketing at Verizon, but gave no further details of what that might entail.

The comment is another sign of a closer relationship between the two companies. Bloomberg reported late last month that Verizon was in talks with Apple and Google to possibly create an online streaming TV service in time for the launch of Verizon’s 5G internet product later this year. A partnership with Apple or Google could allow Verizon to bundle TV with 5G, helping it to compete with local internet providers that already have online TV streaming services. 

Apple did not release a press statement of their own on the Apple Music partnership. An Apple spokesperson did not respond to repeated attempts for comment from BESTApple TV on the Verizon statement of possible other working relationships.

Verizon isn’t the first carrier to bundle streaming services with mobile phone plans. Both of AT&T’s unlimited plans include access to the newly launched WatchTV streaming service. T-Mobile offers Netflix access for T-Mobile One customers with two or more lines of unlimited data. Sprint offers free streaming Hulu service to customers who sign up for its basic unlimited plan while adding a Tidal streaming subscription for the more expensive Unlimited Plus option.

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About the Author

Brad is co-founder and editor-in-chief of BESTAppleTV.com. He has been a technology reporter since the late 1980s having previously worked for MacUser, MacFormat, and iCreate magazines, as well as MacNN.com, MacObserver.com, MacCentral.com, MacMinute.com, and Macworld.com. He hosted and produced the MacFormat This Week podcast for three years. He was also a reporter, editor, and producer for the Associated Press and United Press International.



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