Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of services, and Apple CEO Tim Cook welcome MLS players at the Apple campus in Cupertino, California, in January.
“We’re in Year One of a 10-year partnership,” Cue said in on-the-record remarks made on a media call on Tuesday morning and embargoed until Thursday, “so this is just the beginning. But we’re off to a great start with subscriptions and viewership. We don’t share specific subscription numbers, but I can tell you we’re certainly doing much better than we had forecasted.”
Cue has guided the launch of the unique pay service on Apple TV. He is one of the most powerful executives at Apple, overseeing Apple’s services, including Apple Music, Apple News, Apple Podcasts, the Apple TV app, and Apple TV+, as well as other products like Apple Pay and Apple’s iCloud services.
“I’m very proud and happy with what we’ve accomplished so far, but I am sure that the best is yet to come,” he added. “It’s been a great few months for such a quick turnaround. So I’m incredibly proud of everyone on our team, everyone in the league. The teams, players and owners have been instrumental in making this a huge success to start the season.”
Apple has adjusted its MLS offerings, testing the number of games it offers in front of the paywall each matchday. The lifting of the embargoed remarks coincided with the announcement of a price reduction for MLS Season Pass for the rest of the season (as low as $39 for Apple TV+ subscribers). Cue said the mid-season offer was comparable to the strategies of others.
“Our number one goal when we started this," he added, "was to make sure that in Year One, we’ve got all the MLS fans that were out there to feel like and see that we really care deeply about the game that they love, and the teams that they love."