No iPad? Apple's March 25 keynote will be 'services focused'

No iPad? Apple's March 25 keynote will be 'services focused'

According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, Apple has been in talks with publishers about a subscription news service that would be a new paid tier of its existing Apple News app.

"With much pushback from publishers Apple is realizing this news service bundle will have its share of hurdles to find success with consumers as well as content partners". And what may be another signal of that idea is an entire event scheduled to unveil that service.

Apple has previously hinted that it will launch new services this year, but hasn't revealed any details yet or confirmed the March 25th event.

The event would mark Apple's first major product announcement for 2019.

Normally Apple events are reserved for new gadgets - like an iPhone 11 or last year's Apple Watch 4 - so the rumored March 25 keynote would be a break from tradition. In fact, the service now has 85 million monthly active users and is the biggest news app in the US. But new hardware like the rumored AirPods update, the long-awaited AirPower charging pad or any new phone, tablet or Mac models aren't on the agenda.

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Apple representatives have told publishers that the subscription service could be priced at about $10 a month, but the final price could change, WSJ said. So if you've been waiting for the new iPad & iPad Mini, new iPod, and second-gen AirPods, you'll probably need to wait a little longer. It is also reported that Apple will announce a new news service at the event.

Apple declined comment Wednesday when contacted by Deadline.

It's worth noting that the absence of streaming options from entities like HBO, Netflix, and perhaps Hulu arguably hurts Apple more than anyone else given that the company would ideally like to house all popular streaming options under a unified umbrella app on iOS.

But it also says Apple only wants to give 50% of that fee to news publishers - and keep the rest for itself.

So, circle that date on the calendar with a pencil just in case.

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