Apple TV Plus recently landed its next big cinematic title, but in terms of growing its subscriber base, the company is lagging behind. Competitors such as Disney HotStar have surged ahead and now Apple is playing catch up by offering an extension of its free trial subscription till July 2021. 

The company is reportedly extending the free trial period for the Apple TV Plus one-year free trials that it dishes out with the hardware. Anyone owning an Apple TV Plus subscription set to expire from now till June can continue to get access till July 2021. So, those who signed up a year ago when the service was launched, could now get an additional nine months of free access. 

Though there is no official announcement from Apple, a report in 9to5Mac over the weekend says the new extension says that users holding on to the subscription without cancelling it get an extra six months of the service. The first extension had been announced in October. 

Not only would this benefit customers with free trials set to end in February to June, it would also impact users whose annual subscription ends between this timeframe as they would not require to pay additional charge for these months. 

The report went on to add that Apple would be notifying all eligible customers of the new extension through an email over the coming weeks. It said that like the previous occasion, Apple would also compensate existing subscribers with credit refunds. 

The second round of extensions is expected to provide Apple more time to expand its user-base on Apple TV Plus as the company creates original content under some major collaborations with top directors and movie makers. The company also has a few web based series awaiting a second season. 

Disney Plus has hit a milestone, with Disney CEO Bob Igers reporting in a quarterly investors call that the streaming service now boasts over 73 million subscribers. The news was a silver lining amidst an overall drop in profits in 2020, as the company has struggled to keep its various theme parks open or pull in viewers in theaters. 

Apple, with its growing value for India and an audience in the region, charges Rs.99 a month for its Apple TV Plus service. The company had also announced the Apple One bundle plans back in September to combine all of its services. These plans start at Rs.195 per month for individuals who get access to Apple TV+ Apple Music, Apple Arcade+ and 50GB of iCloud data.

A few extra months of free subscription could up the ante for Apple as competitors in the Indian market are already ensconced. Amazon Prime Video charges Rs. 129 a month (Rs.999 annual), to bundle access to movies and Amazon Music besides the Prime services. Netflix subscription costs Rs.199 per month for the basic mobile plan that does not allow users to stream on to a larger screen. 

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