New iPhone 12 owners bombarded with free Apple Arcade offers

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Apple really wants you to try Apple Arcade. The company is using every resource at its disposal to inform new iPhone 12 owners that their recent handset purchase entitles them to three months of free access to the service.

Shortly after iPhone 12 was unveiled in October, Apple announced announced a trial offer that presents new iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV and iPod touch owners with a 90-day taste of Apple Arcade.

For iPhone 12, the deadline to accept Apple's proposal ends 90 days after the handset is activated. And the company is letting buyers know.

Apple began advertising the promotion on Tuesday, less than a week after launch day iPhone 12 units landed in customers' hands. The tech giant used email, the App Store and, in a rare step, its various iOS platform tools to reach potential subscribers.

Customers received an App Store notification reading, "Start 3 Months of Apple Arcade for Free," and including stipulations of the deal. A separate email highlighting SpongeBob: Patty Pursuit and Crossy Road Castle extended Apple's "congratulations" on receiving "3 free months of Apple Arcade for the whole family." The Apple Arcade section of the App Store has also been updated to reflect the extended three-month trial period.

Perhaps most unusual is a dedicated section in the Settings app that urges users to redeem the offer within 90 days. The menu listing appears prominently at the top of the page, just below account settings.

The marketing blitz appears to impact only those users who are not currently subscribed to Apple Arcade.

Apple has in the past leveraged system push notifications to promote first-party products and service. In 2014, for example, a push notification was sent out to advertise App Store's (RED) campaign. More recently, the Apple Store app in 2018 pushed an ad promoting iPhone XR and XS.

Apple is aggressively marketing its new and existing services amid stiff competition from Amazon, Netflix, Microsoft and other major tech industry players. The company is battling stalwarts in a variety of segments, from music to video streaming to news and, now, subscription-based gaming. To better compete on price, the iPhone maker will later this year roll out a bundle called Apple One that wraps Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, Apple News+, iCloud storage and the forthcoming Apple Fitness+ into tiered monthly plans.