Apple One bundles all of the company̵7;s services into one monthly payment, but is that a good deal? Let’s take a look! You can probably save some money by creating your own bundle and avoiding Apple’s less popular services.
What’s in Apple One?
Apple One includes services like iCloud, Apple Music, Apple TV +, Apple Arcade and (if you’re in the Premier Level), Apple News + and Apple Fitness +.
Individual and family agreements are $ 14.95 and $ 19.95 per month, respectively, while the Premier plan gives you $ 29.95 back. In terms of value, you save the individual plan $ 6.01 per month, while the family plan saves $ 7.97. The premiere plan is the best of the bunch. That’s about half the price of each bundled service when purchased separately – a saving of $ 24.95.
There’s a lot on paper. Chances are, however, that you do not save much of anything when you take into account the services you do not already use or do not plan to use.
Apple Arcade, for example, has not been as successful as Apple had hoped. Apple TV + is meanwhile supported by the free annual subscriptions that the company distributes with qualified purchases.
Offers are starting to look less budget-friendly when you consider the unused services you pay for. When you consider switching from other platforms you use for the same cost (as from Spotify to Apple Music), the deal starts to look like a lesser option and more headache.
But how much can you save if you just bundle the services you need and go beyond Apple’s ecosystem when needed?
RELATED: How much money do you save with Apple One?
The world’s two most popular streaming services for music cost the same, so this is the simplest category. An individual plan on both Spotify and Apple Music gives you back $ 10 per month.
If you are a student, Spotify is a good idea. For $ 5 a month (and three months for free) you can get Spotify, Hulu and Showtime in one promotional package. You also get two competing services, both of which offer more value than Apple’s streaming TV platform.
With the $ 10 individual or $ 15 family plan, it comes down to personal preferences. For what it’s worth, Spotify has about twice as many paying subscribers as Apple Music. We have used both and have no problem recommending either of the services.
In individual plans, Apple offers 50 GB of iCloud storage, which costs $ 1 if purchased off-pack. We suggest you skip the package there and just pay your dollars. This would make your sum for the individual plan $ 6 or $ 11, depending on whether you qualify for the student discount.
We would make the same recommendation across the board. For the family plan, the included 200 GB of storage costs $ 2.99 if purchased separately. The Premier Plan and its 2 TB storage cost $ 9.99 when purchased separately.
Here is an inventory of where we are when we roll our bundles:
- $ 11 for an individual plan ($ 4 monthly savings).
- $ 18 for a family plan ($ 2 monthly savings).
- $ 25 for a Premier plan ($ 5 monthly savings).
Chances are, however, that you do not need as much storage as you think. If you can do less, the costs of family and retirement plans will decrease significantly.
Do your digital files sparkle with joy?
Cloud storage should be secondary to physical storage. An actual device is cheaper and gives you full control over what you store and who can see it. In addition to security issues, local storage is also usually faster and more reliable. Use the cloud to store secondary copies of photos, videos, and backups of devices.
You probably pay way too much for cloud storage if you only use it primarily to store photos and videos. There is a better way!
Both Google and Amazon offer unlimited photo storage. The former is free with a Google Photos account, and the latter requires an Amazon Prime subscription. Both also allow video uploads, with some precautions.
Google compresses your videos and photos to save space and Amazon gives you only 5 GB. Google is a good alternative, and you probably won’t notice the compression. Here is a comparison for those who are unsure.
If you stream your music and back up your photo library elsewhere, you really should not need more than 50 GB of iCloud storage for an individual and 200 GB for a family. It costs $ 1 or $ 3, depending on your needs.
If you are a bit of a digital hoarder and need a Premier plan, Apple is not the best option. IDrive and Zoolz both offer 5 TB for about $ 50 per year, or just over $ 4 per month. That’s less than half of what Apple charges for 2 TB.
Build a better package
If you do not use Apple TV + or Apple Arcade, it makes more sense to roll your own bundle. For individual plans and family plans, you will save 26% on the former and 10% on the latter.
The math is starting to get a little foggy with Apple’s Premier Plan, at about $ 30 a month. Here, it makes sense to join the package if you use at least three of the more expensive ($ 10+) services, such as Apple Music Family Plan, iCloud storage, Fitness + or News +.
If you do not use Apple Arcade or Apple TV +, you want to be sure that you get significant use of at least three of the services listed above. Even then, it is still likely that alternatives outside of Apple’s ecosystem can save a healthy change.
For example, there are some excellent free apps on both iOS and Android for fitness enthusiasts, such as FitOn, PEAR and Nike Training Club. There are premium upgrades available that offer additional workouts, but the free versions should be more than enough for most people.
For news junkies, a handful of email newsletters would probably serve you just as well, if not better, than News +, as apps like Flipboard or a list of your favorite RSS feeds in Feedly. The ability to customize feeds gives you detailed control that you do not get with News +. In our opinion, these apps also offer better content than Apple’s curators.
If you release both News + and Fitness + for free, the monthly cost of an Apple One package (or the services we still use) drops to $ 19. This includes either an Apple Music or Spotify Family Plan and 5 TB of cloud storage. With the $ 9 you save each month, you can even collect Netflix in your plan, giving you superior value over Apple TV +.
More than you need
The reality of bundles is that they are designed to attract. Packing popular services with some that are often ignored is a win-win-for-business. They can squeeze a few extra dollars out of you and enter their subscriber numbers for apps that may be struggling.
From a consumer perspective, many of these packages are only there to extract more money by making you believe that you will be using apps and services that you will probably never do.
Apple One is no exception in this case.