New Apple Services Could Include 'Podcasts+,' 'Stocks+,' and 'Mail+,' Analysts Predict
A range of new Apple services could include "Podcasts+," "Stocks+," and "Mail+," according to a new report by Loup Ventures analysts.
Apple's subscription service products are increasingly important to its business model and is now almost the size of a Fortune 50 company by revenue, growing by 16 percent in 2020 to $53.7 billion. Loup Ventures highlights that Spotify accumulated 144 million paid subscribers over a period of 14 years, while Apple Music accumulated 85 million paid subscribers in just five years. "This illustrates the power of services built on top of default apps," the report says.
Loup Ventures claims that there is room for a number of additions to Apple's successful services segment. New subscriptions could be "hiding in plain sight," being built upon existing apps, and in turn aid the continued growth and adoption of Apple's products and services.
Podcasts+ would form a tier in the existing Podcasts app, offering a selection of exclusive premium shows. Spotify has moved aggressively into podcasts, acquiring the exclusive rights to popular shows and removing them from other services. Podcasts+ would enable Apple to claw back space within the field. Apple has been repeatedly rumored to be moving into exclusive podcasts, even holding talks to acquire podcast network Wondery before it was bought by Amazon.
According to the report, Podcasts+ is expected to be bundled as a part of Apple One as well as Apple Music, with no added charge for existing paid subscribers. Podcasts+ would also help to "drive incremental interest" in Apple Music and Apple One as a result, "generating high-margin, recurring revenue."
Stocks+ could build upon Apple's move into personal finance with Apple Card, offering financial services such as investment accounts. Apple could "replicate its success with Apple Card and offer low-fee, private, secure, simple brokerage accounts," and present integrated information on cost basis, market value, gain, and loss. In addition, Apple could offer trading services similar to Robinhood and robo-advisory services like Wealthfront.
Furthermore, Mail+ could be the first Apple service related to personal productivity. Taking cues from existing services such as Invisible and Calendly, Mail+ could offer advanced inbox management, automation, and scheduling.
The report also tentatively outlines two additional services titled "Maps+" and "Health+," but provides much less information about what forms they could take. Maps+ could present advanced suggestions for destinations based on a desired outcome and be heavily integrated into the rumored Apple Car. Health+ could leverage the data Apple currently gathers via its Health app and present an offering that moves into digital healthcare and telemedicine.
Key to any new Apple services, the report explains, is a high level of integration. Apple Fitness+ serves as a case study of how an Apple service can move into a new space and offer a product that competitors are unable to match due to deep integration with existing products and services, such as the Apple Watch, Activity rings, and Apple Music.
Loup Ventures believes that new Apple services will capture value in new ways and drive the company toward a three-trillion dollar market cap. The firm has also speculated in the past that Apple will launch a combined hardware and software subscription.