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You’ll need an Apple TV+ subscription to binge Apple’s next hit podcast

Published Jun 24th, 2024 4:55PM EDT
Apple TV+ reveals trailer for new Apple Original podcast “My Divo” premiering July 1
Image: Apple

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We all saw this coming, right? What’s the point of creating all of these services if you can’t leverage them against each other? That seems to be what Tim Cook and Apple have in mind with how they are treating Apple TV+ subscribers vs. everyone else with their new original podcast.

Today, the company announced a new Apple Original Podcast titled “My Divo.” The podcast is the first that the company will release in both English and Spanish and tells the story of award-winning journalist Maria Garcia, who uses the legacy of Mexican icon Juan Gabriel (aka El Divo de Juárez) to get back to her roots.

Garcia, creator of the critically acclaimed podcast “Anything for Selena” for which she was named Apple Podcasts’ 2021 Newcomer of the Year, hails from the same hometown as local hero turned global star Gabriel and looks to his legacy as she tries to reconcile with her own identity, reexamining their similarities within their Mexican heritage. Singer, songwriter and pop icon Gabriel was a Latin music trailblazer known for his eccentric, colorful style and high-energy performances. Gabriel sold over 100 million albums, making him one of the bestselling artists in Mexican history. “My Divo” explores Juan Gabriel’s personal life and public persona, discovering new important details about his life, including how his sexuality was perceived and the impact it had on his legacy.

My Divo, a new original podcast from Apple.

While this certainly isn’t the first original podcast to come from Apple, it is the first where Apple TV+ subscribers will get perks over non-subscribers. The company has announced that, while the first two episodes of the podcast will be available for everyone starting on July 1st, Apple TV+ subscribers will actually get access to the entire series at launch.

If you aren’t an Apple TV+ subscriber, you’ll have to wait for each additional episode to be released every week. Apple has also made it very clear that it plans to follow this strategy going forward for all of its upcoming original podcasts.

Apple TV+ subscribers can connect their subscription on Apple Podcasts and access all eight episodes of “My Divo” on July 1 on Apple Podcasts at Nonsubscribers can access the first two episodes of the eight-episode podcast, with the remaining episodes releasing weekly. Upcoming Apple TV+ podcasts will also be made available in full to subscribers. 

Paywalled podcasts

Paying for access to podcasts isn’t a new idea. There are plenty of podcasts that offer extended versions of episodes or even exclusive episodes to paying subscribers. However, I don’t know how I feel about getting early access to an entire series while everyone else has to wait. I especially don’t know how I feel about Apple being the one to do this.

The company is obviously trying to offset the cost of these original podcasts by trying to boost the number of subscribers to Apple TV+, the company’s streaming service. However, by creating this two-tier system, you could end up being in a position where you subscribe to a streaming service you aren’t interested in just to get early access to a podcast you want to listen to.

Apple TV Plus logo
There’s a lot to love on Apple TV+, but forcing a subscription to get access to a podcast isn’t one of them. Image source: Apple

Don’t get me wrong — I think Apple TV+ is probably the best streaming service out there right now when you compare the quality of the content to others. Apple TV+ is also still one of the most affordable streaming services out there and still offers it completely ad-free. It also doesn’t upcharge you for certain features like being able to stream in 4K HDR resolution.

Of course, the company believes that this will likely introduce more people to Apple TV+ and that, once they start watching, they’ll love it. I just don’t like that this is the way they’re setting the first impression: a streaming service you are forced to subscribe to in order to listen to a podcast early. That’s just a weird proposition that — regardless of how good the streaming service is — I don’t think many people will feel good about.

Joe Wituschek Tech News Contributor

Joe Wituschek is a Tech News Contributor for BGR.

With expertise in tech that spans over 10 years, Joe covers the technology industry's breaking news, opinion pieces and reviews.