Apple may be willing to spend more than half a billion dollars to secure a successful launch for Apple Arcade, its upcoming video game subscription service, according to a new report from the Financial Times.
Apple Arcade was unveiled last month alongside Apple’s much-anticipated News Plus and TV Plus subscription services. The service is due to arrive this fall, and Apple will offer more than 100 games with the subscription service; pricing details aren’t set yet.
Apple did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment on the reported budget.
While Apple’s choice to invest in video games came as a surprise to some, it reflects growing interest in the industry from major tech companies. Google announced a streaming video game platform called Stadia at the Game Developer’s Conference in March, and Amazon is working on new games and a possible streaming service as well.
The projected $500 million budget for Apple Arcade is about half of what Apple spent to create new TV shows and movies for Apple TV Plus. Apple Arcade will occupy a new tab in the App Store, and subscribers will be able to download and play any game from the arcade on iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV.
Apple has invested millions with indie developers to make new exclusive games for Apple Arcade; the Financial Times reports that established publishers have also been offered incentives to make their upcoming titles Apple Arcade exclusives. That means the games will launch on Apple Arcade first, then can be released on other video game platforms after a few months.
Apple Arcade games will be ad-free, and there will be no in-app purchases. Apple says new games will be added to the service on a regular basis. Games are stored permanently on the device so they will be playable offline, too. Confirmed Apple Arcade publishers include Annapurna Interactive, Bossa Studios, Cartoon Network, Finji, Giant Squid, Klei Entertainment, Konami, LEGO, Mistwalker Corporation, SEGA, Snowman, ustwo games and dozens more.
According to the Financial Times, HSBC analysts suggest that Apple Arcade subscriptions could eventually generate more revenue than Apple TV Plus or Apple News Plus. Analysts predict that Apple Arcade revenue could reach $4.5 billion by 2024, compared to $4.1 billion in projected revenue for Arcade TV Plus.
Apple will announce the official launch date and pricing details for Apple Arcade later this year, with the service expected to launch in the fall. To find out more about the service, check out our full breakdown of Apple Arcade.