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Apple's fitness streaming service, Apple Fitness+, continues to be a strong competitor to Peloton, a well-established service that has become a significant player in the digital fitness space. Both Apple Fitness+ and Peloton offer a range of polished workout routines, delivered by enthusiastic instructors and accompanied by motivating music playlists.

Apple-fitness-plus-feature.jpg

As both subscription services share several similarities, such as offering a variety of workouts that require little to no equipment, it might not be immediately obvious which one is the better choice for individual needs. Our guide aims to answer this question by providing a comprehensive comparison of these two fitness subscription services, taking into account their latest features and pricing.

Peloton App Tiers

Apple Fitness+ is often compared to Peloton because both offer bike, treadmill, and rowing classes with a comparable digital experience. However, Peloton also sells a range of hardware products that integrate with its digital classes, enhancing the workout experience by connecting with the machine's resistance, cadence, and speed. This integration offers a more seamless experience for workouts on Peloton bikes or treadmills but comes at a higher cost, with equipment prices going up to $3,195, plus the need for a monthly subscription.

peloton-logo.jpeg

In contrast, Apple Fitness+ does not integrate with any equipment. With the recent restructuring of Peloton's digital offerings into tiered subscriptions – Peloton App Free, Peloton App One, and Peloton App+ – the comparison with Apple Fitness+ becomes more nuanced.

These tiers range from a basic, freemium model offering limited access (Peloton App Free) to a comprehensive, premium subscription (Peloton App+), giving users a broad spectrum of digital workout options without the need for Peloton's physical equipment. This tiered approach positions Peloton's digital offerings as a more direct competitor to Apple Fitness+, catering to a wider range of users with varying needs and preferences.

Comparing Apple Fitness+ and Peloton

Apple Fitness+ and Peloton share a number of attributes, such as four types of workout and an equipment-lite emphasis:

Similarities

  • Strength, cycling, treadmill, yoga, pilates, and meditation workouts
  • Highly-trained, charismatic instructors
  • Curated music during workouts
  • Equipment-lite workouts, with most requiring no equipment, or just a mat and dumbbells
  • Workouts can be downloaded for offline use
  • Integration with Apple Watch (to varying degrees)
  • Diverse workout library catering to different fitness levels
  • Ability to track and monitor workout progress
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV
  • Both services offer new content updates regularly

The differences between Apple Fitness+ and Peloton are more pronounced when it comes to additional workouts not offered by the rival service and pricing.

Differences

Apple Fitness+Peloton
Additional HIIT, core, rowing, dance, pilates, kickboxing, and mindful cooldown workoutsAdditional cardio, outdoor, running, walking, boxing, barre, and stretching workouts
Time to Walk and Time to Run audio episodes
Full integration with Apple Watch and Activity RingsLimited Apple Watch and Activity Ring integration
Pre-recorded workouts‌Pre-recorded and interactive live workouts
Apple Music integration and Artist SpotlightsApple Music and Spotify integration via the Peloton app
Apple devices onlyAlso available on Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Android TV, and Roku TV
$9.99/month or $79.99/year
App Tiers: Free, App One ($12.99/month or $129/year), and App+ ($24/month or $240/year)
Included in Apple One Premier Tier subscription for $29.95 per month, family access availableSpecial pricing tiers on the Peloton App offered for various professions and communities in the U.S.


Read on for a closer look at each of these aspects, and see what exactly both fitness subscription services have to offer.

Workout Types

Both services espouse a selection of workouts to appeal to a broad audience, but there are slight differences in what each offers. Apple Fitness+ features 12 workouts:
  • High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
  • Strength
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Pilates
  • Dance
  • Core
  • Cycling
  • Kickboxing
  • Treadmill (for running and walking)
  • Rowing
  • Mindful Cooldown

Peloton offers 16 workouts across its app tiers, including:
  • Strength
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Cardio
  • Stretching
  • Cycling
  • Outdoor
  • Running
  • Walking
  • Tread Bootcamp
  • Bike Bootcamp
  • Boxing
  • Pilates
  • Barre
  • Rowing
  • Row Bootcamp

Both Apple Fitness+ and Peloton offer a variety of workouts to cater to different fitness preferences. They share common workout types like strength, cycling, treadmill, yoga, and meditation, yet there are some important distinctions.

peloton-workout-with-weight.jpeg

Apple Fitness+ features specific workouts that Peloton lacks such as high-intensity interval training (HIIT), core, dance, and mindful cooldown. These workouts are clearly categorized, making it easier for users to understand what each session entails. Peloton, with its new tiered app structure, offers a wide range of workouts including cardio, outdoor running, stretching, tread bootcamp, and bike bootcamp, in addition to the common types. While Peloton provides a broad array of choices, it may be less clear in its categorization compared to Apple Fitness+, but members are able to search for what they are looking for.

apple-fitness-plus-burn-bar.jpg

Both services have their unique strengths: Apple Fitness+ with its clear categorization and unique workout types such as danc... Click here to read rest of article

Article Link: Apple Fitness+ vs. Peloton Buyer's Guide
 
Last edited:

Amadeo

macrumors regular
Jul 11, 2008
116
92
Not trying to be a Peloton fanboy (even I've considered what life with Apple Fitness+ would look like), but there are more exercise options in Peloton than this guide seems to suggest.

"Apple Fitness+ features specific workouts that Peloton lacks such as high-intensity interval training (HIIT), core, dance, pilates, and mindful cooldown."

These are exercises in Peloton. Perhaps they aren't categorized as such, but there are HIIT exercises, and core exercises, and meditative cooldowns, etc. Just wouldn't want people to think that these things are just entirely absent.
 

ELman

macrumors 6502
Jul 6, 2017
475
1,241
I use both and feel that Peloton offers more intense workout compared to Apple Fitness. It also bother me that Apple Fitness does not allow you log in on an iPad like you can on the Apple TV.
 

CalMin

Contributor
Nov 8, 2007
1,615
2,704
The intangible here is the instructors. Perhaps I have been indoctrinated for too long with Peloton but the personalities of the instructors are far more compelling than the family friendly Apple instructors. Yes - there's cursing but it's all PG-13 vs. the highly sanitized Apple instructors with their bright colors and their fake smiles. (I'm being a bit mean here - the Apple instructors are all excellent, but some how it all seems very clinical and less fun than with Peloton.)

I don't have a Peloton bike (I use a Keiser M3) so it's not about hardware lock-in. I just find the experience on Apple inferior overall.
 

dohspc

macrumors 6502
Jun 7, 2008
435
755
Plano, TX
Apple Fitness is good as far as integration with Apple devices. If you have all Apple devices and subscribe to Apple One it's a no-brainer. I used to use the treadmill workouts but they got boring after a while due to no new classes. Eventually, I tried the Peloton app subscription and really enjoyed the classes which are almost new every day. So much so that I bought the treadmill lol.
 

Amadeo

macrumors regular
Jul 11, 2008
116
92
I use both and feel that Peloton offers more intense workout compared to Apple Fitness. It also bother me that Apple Fitness does not allow you log in on an iPad like you can on the Apple TV.
Wait. What? Seriously? I've never been curious because I don't use Apple Fitness+. But is there really no way to log in on your iPad? That's insane. When I'm traveling, I much prefer to use my iPad (which I travel with) when exercising in my hotel room, than my iPhone. Frankly, I hate using my iPhone for any kind of exercise other than to listen to audio on a walk/run.
 

dohspc

macrumors 6502
Jun 7, 2008
435
755
Plano, TX
I use both and feel that Peloton offers more intense workout compared to Apple Fitness. It also bother me that Apple Fitness does not allow you log in on an iPad like you can on the Apple TV.

I've used the iPad Fitness App and my Apple watch at the gym to do the running classes, they worked great. You of course need WiFi/cellular or download the class ahead of time in the fitness app.
 

gumbyhw

macrumors member
Nov 6, 2006
93
108
is there any third party that integrates into Apple fitness the way peloton does? My watch has never buzzed and tried to connect to any gear at my gym or when traveling.
 

ELman

macrumors 6502
Jul 6, 2017
475
1,241
Wait. What? Seriously? I've never been curious because I don't use Apple Fitness+. But is there really no way to log in on your iPad? That's insane. When I'm traveling, I much prefer to use my iPad (which I travel with) when exercising in my hotel room, than my iPhone. Frankly, I hate using my iPhone for any kind of exercise other than to listen to audio on a walk/run.
You can use an iPad, but the account you are using requires that account to have an Apple Watch or you can't download the fitness app to the iPad.

In my situation I have an iPad that is used by family members for just fitness. I created a family fitness account on this iPad to keep it separate from other family members Apple accounts. Because this fitness account does not have an Apple watch tied to the Apple ID you can't even download the Apple Fitness app to the iPad.

If I want to use the Apple Fitness app with an iPad I need to use the iPad that's tied to my Apple ID and Apple Watch. On the Apple TV you have the options of selecting your own profile when you start the app.

I can use the Peloton App on any iPad without any worry about who's Apple ID it tied to or of an Apple Watch is associated with the Apple ID.

Apple needs to make it easier for anyone to access the fitness app.
 

CalMin

Contributor
Nov 8, 2007
1,615
2,704
Apple Fitness is good as far as integration with Apple devices. If you have all Apple devices and subscribe to Apple One it's a no-brainer. I used to use the treadmill workouts but they got boring after a while due to no new classes. Eventually, I tried the Peloton app subscription and really enjoyed the classes which are almost new every day. So much so that I bought the treadmill lol.

And there's the rub. I had Apple One for most of this year and still couldn't bring myself to cancel my Peloton sub and go with just Apple even though it would save me money.

[unrelated rant] I've now bailed on Apple One because it went from $29.95 to $37.95 in a single year. I only really need the 2TB iCloud Plus but tried to love all of the other services (incl. Apple fitness) and just couldn't. [/unrelated rant]
 

ericg301

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2010
2,246
2,384
I had both. I canceled Peloton after they raised their rates this summer and just downgraded my Apple One bundle for the same reason. Both were great during the pandemic when no one wanted to go to the gym, but I've been back 3-5 days a week for a couple of years now—and don't need those apps to do strength training. Meanwhile, my bike (non Peloton) just sits there in the corner.
 

athousandbands

macrumors G3
Jun 5, 2019
9,065
31,366
Discord
You can use an iPad, but the account you are using requires that account to have an Apple Watch or you can't download the fitness app to the iPad.

In my situation I have an iPad that is used by family members for just fitness. I created a family fitness account on this iPad to keep it separate from other family members Apple accounts. Because this fitness account does not have an Apple watch tied to the Apple ID you can't even download the Apple Fitness app to the iPad.

If I want to use the Apple Fitness app with an iPad I need to use the iPad that's tied to my Apple ID and Apple Watch. On the Apple TV you have the options of selecting your own profile when you start the app.

I can use the Peloton App on any iPad without any worry about who's Apple ID it tied to or of an Apple Watch is associated with the Apple ID.

Apple needs to make it easier for anyone to access the fitness app.
How have they not shipped the broader multi-user functionality for iPad is the real question
 
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avatar77

macrumors regular
Nov 21, 2017
102
205
DC Area
Have both Peloton App One and Apple Fitness+ (as part of Apple One). I don't own a single piece of Peloton hardware, but I do use an app to integrate my bike's telemetry into Apple Health and also show me the equivalent Peloton resistance settings, so it's as close to a native experience as I can get. On hardware-agnostic AF+, I can't do this and the instructors are not giving out any specific resistance or cadence numbers, so I find it harder to have a consistent experience.

I also find the variety of music and instructors on Peloton to be FAR broader than AF+. I prefer rock (mainly indie or alternative) to pop or dance, and AF+ definitely skews pop. While this is true of Peloton too, Peloton is cranking out more classes every day, and so they put out more classes to my musical liking than AF+ through sheer volume. My wife mixes in a lot more Yoga and strength classes and also prefers Peloton, though I think she prefers the movements and methods. I will say, AF+ has excellent production quality and the video resolution seems to be higher as well.
 

Amadeo

macrumors regular
Jul 11, 2008
116
92
I also find the variety of music and instructors on Peloton to be FAR broader than AF+.
That's my biggest thing. I'm primarily a music rider. It's the thing that motivates me to hop on my bike. It's not really to push myself super hard. And if I do, it's because the music is amping me up. I mostly listen to hip-hop, and the thought of nothing but CLEAN tracks makes me die inside. And the Apple instructors seem robotically happy/enthusiastic. I need some F-bombs, funny stories, and some general bulls**ttery to remind me that these are real people. Cody's not my favorite instructor, but he's the funniest in my rotation. I don't just want to work out. I want to be entertained. It makes exercise that much more bearable. Because if I could have a body like Adonis with no effort, I would gladly take it. Exercising for the joy of exercise isn't really my m/o.
 
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athousandbands

macrumors G3
Jun 5, 2019
9,065
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Discord
I wonder how many people would have to sign up for the software-only 24/mo subscription to help the company transition away from the obvious dog that is the branded equipment…it’s giving Musk math tbh. And how many people would stay if they cut the live classes which sound expensive to produce.
 

BeamMeUp23

macrumors newbie
Nov 27, 2023
1
2
I tried Apple Fitness and Peloton App toward the beginning of the pandemic while looking to add more exercise at home. 3.5 years later I'm steadily using the Peloton app and after a year bought the bike.

My problem with the Apple Fitness app was the forced cheerfulness and lame routines. One of the biggest vibes of Apple was the encouraging people who don't really want to exercise to do it. Apologizing for it being tough and having to sweat. Peloton instructors assume you are there to exercise and want to reach for the limits of that type of class. They treat you like an adult. The routines are solid and high value.

I have a free 3 months subscription on AF with every new Apple product I buy and you couldn't pay me to use their service. Even if Peloton goes under (praying they stay the course) I will use other options. Said by an Apple fan for 35 years starting with Mac SE in 1988
 

PCtoMAC1

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2012
410
171
Wow, the classes and features that Peloton offers were really downplayed. Apple Fitness+ lacks so much, including the A+ instructors. I tried the Apple program and it seemed infantile compared to Peloton. I think it might be good for kids and people who only workout occasionally. Peloton is the way to go for those who workout frequently and use the platform on a consistent basis.
 

Octavius8

macrumors 6502a
Oct 25, 2016
804
1,170
I did not renew my Apple fitness subscription due to the over enthusiastic and super fake smiles of the instructors. I love the idea, but the sessions are filmed like a movie, with no understanding of a gym class. No focus on the correct movements, instructors that must smile or be shooted, most routines are done at elite level or ultra beginner level. Very discouraging. They should let the classes be NATURAL, not a scripted show…
 
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