The good news is that Apple is pushing to secure a 99-cent price for individual episodes of shows for its customers. The bad news is that to do so it’s had to abandon plans for a monthly eat-all-you-can subscription offering. Shame.
iTV, iPad, iPhone
Apple is one of the companies best positioned to take advantage of the move to online and streaming video. Not only does it lead the way with its iTunes service, it also has a range of products on the market, or about to hit the market, able to deliver video.
Apple’s three mobile devices, the iPad, the iPhone, and the iPod Touch are all capable of streaming high quality video. The iPad in particular is a device designed with the delivery of content in mind.
Meanwhile, the Apple TV is all but dead, with the iTV set to replace it. This will be cheap, cheerful, and designed for the mainstream. Giving it a good chance of succeeding.
99 Cent Shows
According to sources speaking to Bloomberg, Apple is in negotiations with media companies, including CBS and Disney, in order to secure episodes of TV shows for just 99-cents. Talks with News Corp., owner of Fox, have so far come the furthest.
For 99-cents, customers would be able to rent an episode for 48-hours within 24-hours of it being aired on broadcast television. What’s more, there will be no commercials included. This was first rumored to be in the works in January on the eve of the iPad being unveiled.
As part of the deal, Apple is letting go of its plans for a monthly subscription service, with sources insisting, “the a la carte rental plan follows an abandoned effort to create a subscription television service.”
The plans for that subscription service were leaked last November. If it had come to fruition, customers would have paid a flat rate of $30-per-month for as much programming as they wanted. But it appears this was one step too far for the networks.
This will only work if the majority of networks and media companies agree to the plan. Which they should do if they know what’s good for them.
Sure, they’re still tied to the cable companies but the future is looking a lot different than the present. And keeping all their eggs in one basket would be madness.
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