The reports of Apple’s Services as a savior seem to have been greatly exaggerated. A whole mess of information about Apple’s strategy for its publishing and video services leaked this week, and it paints a troubling picture of the iPhone maker’s approach. In short: Pay up or get out.

On Tuesday, the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple was demanding a 50 percent cut of its upcoming all-you-can-read publishing service, significantly higher than the 15 percent publishers are now paying Apple on renewing iTunes subscriptions. That was following by a CNBC report that claimed HBO was balking at the terms of Apple’s excessive fees for its new video service, which will supposedly include a mix of original content and premium channels. With that service, Apple is reportedly seeking its usual 30-percent slice of subscription pie.

And what are publishers and providers getting for their money? Basically, access to Apple’s active users. According to the reports, Apple plans on baking the services into the existing News and TV apps, giving them both a prime slot on every new iPhone they sell. And even with declining sales, that’s no small number of devices.

apple tv appApple

Apple is rumored to be building its new video service into its TV app, which will give it a prominent spot on iPhones and Apple TVs.

Instead of innovating, Apple is arriving late to the red carpet and expecting to demand all of the attention. From what I’ve read, the only “innovation” with Apple’s new video service is that you’ll be able to watch everything without leaving the TV app. That’s hardly anything worth forking over 30 percent for, especially when users already have access to the same content elsewhere. And asking struggling publishers for 50 percent of revenue from an already-discounted rate just to join Apple’s club is just plain arrogant.

It feels very similar to the mistakes Apple made with Apple Music, MobileMe, and iCloud. As the richest company in the world, Apple is in a position to deliver services that not only delight its customers but also develop long-lasting relationships with key partners. Instead, it looks like we’re getting more of the same: overpriced, understocked, and underwhelming.

A reboot of classic mistakes 

There is one thing we know for sure about Apple’s new video service: Apple is spending a whole lot of money on it. And based on a report in Bloomberg, it’s pulling out all the stops for the planned March launch, inviting jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, and JJ Abrams, among others.

fix apple music primaryJason Cross/IDG

Apple doesn’t seem to have learned anything from Apple Music’s delayed launch.

But while Apple may be serious about the star power behind its new service, big names alone won’t make it a success. Netflix rolls out A-list artists all the time, and Amazon wins Emmys. The video-streaming space is extremely competitive, and no matter how much cachet its name carries, Apple is still a small fish in a very big pond. The success of Apple’s new service hinges on what should be its bread-and-butter: the user experience.

But we don’t need to look any further than Apple Music to see how inferior Apple’s current services are. I’ve been a subscriber since day one and will remain one as long as my 22,000-plus library stays locked to iTunes, but every time I launch Spotify I’m jealous of the interface, navigation, and discovery. Even Spotify’s free tier is better than what Apple offers.