Apple surprised its fans in September when it announced that anyone who bought an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV, or MacBook from September 10 onward (for a limited time) would get a free year of Apple TV+. But Apple says the offer is only good for the next three months. The company has also been a little bit cagey about how to activate this free thing. Apple TV+ launches today, so we’re here to clear things up.
Long story short, to claim your year-long Apple TV+ subscription, all you have to do is sign in to Apple TV+. That means you’ll first have to download the app on a device running iOS, iPadOS, macOS, or tvOS. Then, make sure you’re signed in with the Apple ID associated with the new device, and open the app. You should be presented with the offer immediately. Just tap “Enjoy 1 Year Free.” You might have to put your Apple ID password in again, but after that, you can binge-watch that Reese Witherspoon show all you want for one year.
There are a couple of caveats here. First, if you don’t buy an applicable new Apple device, you can only get a seven-day trial of TV+ For those of you who do qualify for the free year, because Apple will already have your payment information, you will start paying $5 a month for Apple TV+ as soon as your one-year trial is up. If you cancel your trial before the year is up, your access will be cut off immediately, and you can’t restart it. (You can cancel the subscription in the app’s settings at any time.) And honestly, if you hate that Reese Witherspoon show and end up paying $5 because you forgot to cancel Apple TV+ the day that your trial expired, you’re most likely not going to get a refund. So set a calendar reminder for October 31, 2020 (or one year minus a day from whenever you activate your free year).
If you want to learn more about this tricky free thing, check out Apple Support. In the meantime, get excited about that Reese Witherspoon show!