Eddy Cue Talks Apple Music Subscriptions as Initial Three-Month Free Trials End
Prior to the release of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, Eddy Cue sat down with Evening Standard to discuss a handful of topics, including the launch of the new smartphones, the impending end of the first wave of free trial users for Apple Music, and the issue of roaming charges on iPhone users traveling abroad.
Cue also addressed the topic of the Apple Music Festival, which ended its ten day run this week in London, calling the acts nabbed by Apple for the event "the best of the best" and pointing toward the "global" feel of the UK-based festival that would perhaps be lost in another city like New York or Los Angeles. When asked about his worry for the end of Apple Music's first set of three-month free trial users -- which were charged their $9.99 subscription fee on September 30 if choosing to stick around -- Cue remained expectedly optimistic.
However, with the first batch of free three-month trials expiring this week, is he worried about subscribers drastically falling? “Ultimately, you never know until it happens,” he reasons. “But we’re pleased with the number of people who have tried. Everybody gets fixated on the short term but we’re in this for the long haul.”
Although not allowed to discuss the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus in full detail during the pre-launch interview, Cue still walked Evening Standard through a few of the smartphone's new features, including the revamped version of Siri. Eventually, the Apple executive remarked on the topic of roaming data charges when traveling abroad, an issue rumored to be worked on by the company -- and later denied -- by launching its own mobile virtual network operator service in the United States and Europe.
He taps his phone and makes an offhand comment about “trying not to get roaming charges” while in London which, I note, proves how insanely expensive phone calls and data can be abroad. “It’s sad, it’s another problem,” says Cue. “We’re trying to fix it and we’re making a little bit of progress but you’ve got to convince a lot of people.” It sounds like an impossible task. But that, you would imagine, is where the famous flair will come in.
In the full interview, Cue also talks about new features of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus like Live Photos and 3D Touch, also commenting on the topic of customers wanting to delete stock iOS apps, which CEO Tim Cook himself touched on in September. You can check out the full Evening Standard interview with Eddy Cue here.