According to a new report from Bloomberg News, Apple is still determined to launch a new subscription program through which consumers will be provided with iPhones and other devices for a monthly fee.
The report, published on Sunday, said engineering problems prevented the program from launching, but predicted the program would launch in March or April.
Reports published in early 2022 said that Apple is working to bring its service model to the hardware sector, by providing iPhone smartphones and other devices to consumers for a monthly fee.
Bloomberg reported that Apple is currently working on four fintech projects, and has announced two of them: Apple Pay Later, and Apple Card Savings Account. But the company is still working on the Apple Pay Monthly Installments, as well as the subscription program for providing iPhones.
The subscription program was scheduled to launch in 2021 with the iPhone 13 or iPhone 14 in 2022, but the company is still dealing with “engineering and technical setbacks that have led to slow progress and failure to meet deadlines.”
Both the iPhone’s subscription program and Apple’s monthly instalment project are still underway at Apple, and Bloomberg said in its report that it was clear that “payment services proved to be harder than expected.”
That’s partly because Apple is working on a platform for its financial services called Project Breakout, which will include “checks, approvals and transaction history” that other financial services partners typically process.
Although the monthly installment project and the iPhone subscription program look similar, they differ in that the monthly fees in the iPhone program will not represent the price of the device divided by 12 or 24 months, according to Bloomberg. Instead, it will be “a yet-to-be-determined monthly fee that depends on the device the user chooses,” not a fee that will necessarily result in the user eventually owning the device.