Why is Apple TV asking me to pay when I have a subscription?

Why is Apple TV asking you to subscribe when watching content when you already have a subscription? What could be the issue, and how can you fix it?

Many Apple TV users usually encounter this problem when streaming content on Apple TV. There are two possible reasons for this:

  • Your Apple TV subscription is not working for one reason or another.
  • You are trying to access content not supported by your subscription.

We have compiled detailed information on the Apple TV subscription, including the cost and perks you get when subscribing to the service. We have also included a troubleshooting guide to fix your subscription issues.

Your Apple TV subscription might not be working

If Apple TV keeps asking you to start a free trial or subscribe, your subscription is not working. There are several reasons for this, which can include the following:

  • Your subscription is expired
  • App update issues
  • App glitches and bugs
  • You are in a region not supported by Apple TV content (when travelling abroad)

How to fix Apple tv’s not recognizing subscription issue?

Below are some troubleshooting tips you can try when Apple TV is not accepting your subscription:

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1. Check you have an active subscription

Apple TV subscription
Confirm your Apple TV subscription

Your Apple TV subscription will not work if it is expired. This can happen if you have not set up automatic renewals or your subscription payment service has an issue that prevented the renewal.

Therefore, the first thing you should do is check that you have an active subscription. To do this:

  • Go to Settings on your Apple TV app.
  • Navigate to Users and Accounts.
  • Select your User/Account Name.
  • Go to Subscriptions.
  • Check that your Apple TV subscription is active. If it is expired, renew it to start watching content again.

2. Update your Apple TV to the latest version

An outdated app can lead to multiple issues. Usually, the app will update automatically unless you have manually disabled the updates.

To check whether your Apple TV updates are active:

  • Go to Settings
  • Navigate to System
  • Click Software Updates
  • Select Automatically Update on your Apple TV app.

If the updates are set to Off, set them back to On and let the app update. Once the updates are finished, close the app, re-launch it and try streaming your content.

3. Sign out of your account, then sign in again

Sign out of Apple TV
Sign out of Apple TV

The Apple app TV is not immune to app glitches and bugs, which could potentially interfere with your subscription. The good thing is that they are usually temporary, and you can easily fix them.

One of the best ways to fix these glitches is to sign out of your app and sign in again.

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You can even reboot your device (a simple restart using a mobile device or power cycling using a TV or a streaming box) for the best results.

4. Uninstall and re-install the app

If you still have issues with your subscription, your app could be the issue. In addition, apps can sometimes become corrupted due to updates, settings, or cached data.

If none of the above fixes works, you can delete the app and re-install a fresh version.

Chances are, most of the issues you are facing, including the subscription not being recognized, will disappear with the fresh app.

Apple TV still asks me to pay, yet I have an active subscription.

If your Apple TV subscription is not working, the above fixes can help fix the issue.

However, if you are still being asked to start a free trial, subscribe, pay, or rent for content, you are trying to access content your subscription does not support – which you must pay to watch.

So, do you have to pay for everything on Apple TV even if you have a subscription? The Apple TV subscription grants you access to Apple Original content. However, you’ll have to pay for everything else.

What is included with an Apple TV subscription?

What do you get with an Apple TV subscription? Is everything free with an Apple TV subscription, or do you have to pay for some content?

Apple runs an Apple TV Plus streaming service, a paid subscription service that costs $4.99 per month. It offers you access to all of Apple’s Original content, which includes feature-length movies, TV shows, and documentaries.

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In addition, Apple TV Plus offers sports content, including two MLB Friday Night games.

Why do I pay for Apple TV but still have to pay for movies?

Aside from the supported content, you might be asked to pay for other content you try accessing on Apple TV. So, why are you being asked to pay when you have a subscription?

The reason is very simple; you are trying to access Apple TV content, which is not covered by the Apple TV Plus streaming service.

In other words, Apple TV Plus is different from Apple TV, which is why you must pay for all content outside Apple TV Plus.

Apple TV shows
Photo: Apple

What’s the difference between Apple TV and Apple TV+?

Apple TV Plus is a streaming service, like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and others.

However, it only offers Apple Original content, which you get when you subscribe. On the other hand, Apple TV is a media platform that offers Apple TV Plus content and content from other external streaming services such as Hulu, Amazon Prime, Disney, iTunes, Showtime, and Starz.

Therefore, if you are using Apple TV to access Apple TV Plus content, you won’t be asked to pay if you already have a subscription.

However, if you are accessing content from another streaming platform, say Hulu, Amazon Prime, or iTunes, you will be asked to pay for the content.

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About the Author
Rodney Bellamy
I’m Rodney Bellamy, a media and TV enthusiast who has been blogging for over 10 years. He has a background in IT and experience as a Customer Service Technician and an Information Systems Officer.

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