An ad-supported Apple TV+ tier is starting to look all but inevitable. According to The Information, Apple recently hired Lauren Fry, a former ad tech executive, “to help build a video advertising business” for its streaming service. Before her most recent stint at digital advertising firm Simulmedia, Fry held ad sales roles at AT&T and Comcast.
Bringing more ads to Apple TV+ would fall in line with some of Apple’s more recent actions. Toward the end of last year, the company began displaying additional ads within the App Store, a move that could be a precursor to search ads appearing in Apple Maps and other first-party software. It’s worth noting before Fry’s hiring, Apple was already showing ads alongside Major League Baseball games. In November, Bloomberg also reported Apple was building a live tv ad network to support its 10-year deal with Major League Soccer. As The Information points out, an ad-supported tier would be the most straightforward way for Apple to bring more ads to TV+. A handful of other streaming platforms, including Netflix and Disney+, already offer such tiers to customers as they’re an easy way for those services to broaden their subscriber base.