Apple TV+ is still a long way from winning viewers’ hearts

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Apple TV+ is free to everyone who buys a new iPhone, Mac or iPad.
Although people generally like Apple TV+, they like rival streaming services more.
Photo: Apple

Apple TV+ won an accolade no one wants: it’s the streaming video service viewers are most likely to cancel once it stops being free.

Still, satisfaction with Apple’s offering is fairly high, according to survey results revealed on Friday. But people like almost all its competitors more.

Not standing out in a crowded market

Disney+, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and other services including Apple TV+ were the topic of a survey by the cord-cutting and streaming blog Flixed. Respondents had to subscribe to at least two services so they can compare them.

Apple’s offering ranked second on price, a category a majority respondents said was the most important single factor in choosing a streaming service.

But that was the only area Apple TV+ did well in. Hulu won for having the top TV show library, Disney+ came in first in movies, while respondents to this survey said Netflix offers the best original content.

In a ranking of satisfaction, Apple got a 3.12 out of a possible 4. But nearly all rivals did better, with Netflix coming out on top with a 3.41 score.

That’s probably why 83% of respondents plan to stay subscribed to Netflix. But only 44% say the same for Apple TV.

Apple TV+ boosted by lengthy free trials

Apple offers anyone who buys a new iPhone, Mac or iPad a free year of Apple TV+. So although Flixed’s survey found that 20% of respondents to the service don’t plan to renew after their free trial ends, that could be many months from now.

As Flixed noted, a challenge for Apple has been its insistence on only offering new, original content. All the movies and shows on its services are ones Apple produced and released starting last fall.

That’s distinctly different from Disney+, which has a catalog going back to the early 20th century. And Netflix built its reputation on reruns of The Office and Friends.

But original content on Apple TV+ is drawing some viewers. Defending Jacob starring Chris Evans is reportedly something of a breakout hit.