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Networks skeptical of Apple's push for $1 iTunes TV episodes

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 
As Apple hopes to sell some TV episodes for 99 cents through iTunes, major networks have responded with apprehension to the plan, which could alienate local affiliates and cable providers.

According to The New York Times, Apple's plan has been met with skepticism from major networks, but that doesn't mean they aren't listening. "We're willing to try anything," one anonymous TV network executive was quoted as saying, "but the key word is 'try.'"

The news follows last week's announcement from CBS CEO Les Moonves, that his network was considering a price drop to 99 cents per episode for certain TV shows.

But as networks consider the plan, they must also factor in their existing lucrative deals with local cable providers and affiliates. Those partners stand to lose out considerably if iTunes TV sales take away viewers.

The Times noted that the business of TV episode sales is still new, and relatively small. As Apple counts down to 10 billion songs sold on the iTunes Music Store, an estimated 375 million TV episodes have been sold since they were first made available in 2005. In addition, revenue from iTunes is said to have been "marginal" for producers and distributors.

Apple's push for lower prices is connected to the forthcoming launch of the iPad, due to arrive by the end of March. In fact, the Times said some TV executives anonymously said the Cupertino, Calif., company is "desperate" to line up content for the iPad to ensure its success.

The report also noted that Apple is still pushing a $30-per-month TV show subscription plan, which is said to still be on the negotiating table with networks. Apple's subscription proposal was first revealed last November, and would reportedly include an all-you-can-eat download plan that would compete with cable.
post #2 of 45
What they should do if they really want to make it big is to go International. In Europe some of the shows are 1 year behind. Everyone downloads the latest episodes from pirate bay because there is no other way of watching them. Lost/Heroes etc.

There are no good legal alternatives right now.. Unless you don't want to be a season behind everyone else.

And don't say HULU.. Not accessible from Europe.
post #3 of 45
How will Steve save the TV industry if they won't agree to his schemes?

Same with the publishing industry!
post #4 of 45
How much does each network get from our cable TV bills?
I bet it's a LOT less than a buck-a-show.

Even a $30 per-month plan I bet would work out better for the networks.
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post #5 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwee View Post

What they should do if they really want to make it big is to go International. In Europe some of the shows are 1 year behind. Everyone downloads the latest episodes from pirate bay because there is no other way of watching them. Lost/Heroes etc.

There are no good legal alternatives right now.. Unless you don't want to be a season behind everyone else.

And don't say HULU.. Not accessible from Europe.

Yes Europe is behind sadly. I would buy a lot of episodes/seasons for 99 cents/episode. If Apple wants to make digital revolution even bigger they have to push it harder outside USA/Canada.

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post #6 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by iGenius View Post

How will Steve save the TV industry if they won't agree to his schemes?

Same with the publishing industry!

The same way 30 years ago no one thought that average Joe needs computer in his house.

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post #7 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The news follows last week's announcement from CBS CEO Les Moonves, that his network was considering a price drop to 99 cents per episode for certain TV shows.

But as networks consider the plan, they must also factor in their existing lucrative deals with local cable providers and affiliates. Those partners stand to lose out considerably if iTunes TV sales take away viewers.

What it will most certainly help is sales of HD episodes, which I alsways and systematically shun at present. You can notice the difference -for sure- but than again for the one time I watch an episode....

The only one in our household watching a TV episode more than once is our five year old - and he does not care about SD vs. HD.....
post #8 of 45
Not sure why there is an issue. Comcast OnDemand already sells TV episodes for 99 cents--or free.
post #9 of 45
comcast is awful. The content the provide for the price is rediculous. I pay $60 a month for nothing fancy and there is nothing that i watch. Cable companies are raping us on cost. i hope apple comes out with a subscription plan. I am all for that. If the cable companies wanted to compete they should come out with a much cheaper plan and let customers choose 10 channels they want. I dont need 72 channels i dont watch 95% of the garbage on them.
post #10 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by iGenius View Post

How will Steve save the TV industry if they won't agree to his schemes?

Same with the publishing industry!

Let's see - he want to drive the eBook price up to compete against the Kindle and he wants to drive the TV episodes down to hook people into the iPad since he's seen that excluding everything else out due to lack of Flash won't work. Does he really think the TV industry hasn't learned the lesson of the music industry?
post #11 of 45
the cost is .99 per episode, otherwise I'll pass. 1.99/2.99 is a deal breaker for me, I will do without the episode I may have missed.
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post #12 of 45
One thing's for certain, with some TV episodes currently at $3.49 and the season subscription at $70, they are heading in the wrong direction.

I would definitely buy TV episodes at 99¢ and sometimes even at $1.99, but no way at $3.49! The cost of one season of one TV series is about as much as I pay monthly for cable! I have to wonder just how many people pay at these prices!
post #13 of 45
Vote with your dollars if you think the cable companies are costing too much. They can only keep charging that much if people keep paying it. I got sick of it and switched to an antenna. It's great, especially since over-the-air TV is HD quality (and not the compressed HD that cable companies spit out). And, you can even hook it up to your computer with a TV tuner to watch it later. Cable companies encrypt everything and you have to buy one of the few devices that support cable cards or use their system.

There are a few shows that I like that aren't broadcast over the air, so I buy them on iTunes. Granted, this doesn't work for sports, but I've saved hundreds of dollars in the past year by dumping cable.

If enough people get sick of the prices and dump it, they will change. If everyone keeps paying them, they have no reason to change and will just keep increasing the price. If you call to cancel, explain why you're dumping it.

Here's another sad attempt by the cable companies to get ultimate control of what we watch:
http://keepfreetvfree.com/
post #14 of 45
Screw cable! Unless cable had financial ties in creating and producing said tv shows what do the various tv production companies have to worry from cable...

Of course these are the same tv productions that over the years have relied too heavily on reality tv which has turned me off to tv.

So I hope tv comes around with some of their classic shows and some new stuff for .99. I'd buy enough to tide me over when I watch the boob tube with my own channel/show lineup.

But back to cable, I have less channels then I did at the start, those channels have more crap than entertaining shows, and the only thing I have to show is an ever increasing cable bill which leads me back to my original premise...

Screw cable!

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post #15 of 45
For the same reason that it doesn't make sense to pay $60 per month to the Cable company if you rarely watch, it also doesn't make sense to pay Apple $30 per month and only watch 2 shows.

1. Lower the price drastically which will spur consumption. Why pay $0.99 for something you won't watch again? Doesn't make sense.
a. Should be $0.49 or less for HD quality streaming.
b. They would get triple the volume of sales.
c. This would also cut down on pirating.

2. To supplement income based on the lower price, sell one ad slot.
a. A single one minute commercial.
b. This can be done like the FBI warning on DVDs with no fast forwarding.

3. To counter lost sales of DVDs, this model should only be for streaming access. Purchasing episodes for download would be at higher rates - $1.99/2.99...
ex. Lala.com's 0.10 internet purchases of music compared to download of $0.89.

4. Allow people to discover new shows with free streaming of a few episodes of every show.

5. Allow content providers the ability to purchase advertising spots in iTunes to promote their shows based on purchasing history.
ex. I like Lost, so I might like Flash Forward.

6. Allow networks to host streaming of live events ie. Sports, Oscars... This solves for people's biggest compliant about cutting cable - access to sports.

7. The consumption model allows a clear way to compensate creative and production staff - percentage of each sale. This should encourage independent producers to put their shows on iTunes.
post #16 of 45
Cable works great for me. Comcast is rock solid for me, recently lowering my monthly costs by 30 bucks a month.
post #17 of 45
Apple really can't win - they give into the distributors and are criticised by the public, they try and please the public and are criticised by the distributors.

People are very quick to criticise apple re. music prices, movie and tv prices and soon eBook prices - when are people going to realise that apple operate in a free market economy and don't really have the strength to dictate prices (or anything else) if they are to succeed.

I think a lot of people forget how things were before the itunes store - yes - there are lots of alternatives out there now, but at the time jobs was negotiating with the music labels he had a massive uphill struggle.

It's very disappointing that content providers still haven't grasped the fact that they either need to step up to the table and modernise, or their content will simply be stolen and everyone will miss out.

Particularly annoying is the situation with US shows being shown several months later over here in the UK, by which time we've downloaded and watched them, resulting in lower recorded viewing figures for the UK TV channels and shows potentially being cancelled in the UK because of perceived lack of interest. It's a stupid situation and needs fixing - but apple can't fix it - fox, cbs, sony etc. etc. are the ones who need to modernise.
post #18 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

But as networks consider the plan, they must also factor in their existing lucrative deals with local cable providers and affiliates. Those partners stand to lose out considerably if iTunes TV sales take away viewers.

The Times noted that the business of TV episode sales is still new, and relatively small. As Apple counts down to 10 billion songs sold on the iTunes Music Store, an estimated 375 million TV episodes have been sold since they were first made available in 2005. In addition, revenue from iTunes is said to have been "marginal" for producers and distributors.

Sales have been marginal because they haven't hit a price point that the majority of the market will bear. I seem to remember a computer program on an old Apple II at school that taught us that principle with a lemonade stand. For maximum profit, in a simplistic model, the margin is secondary to the number of units sold.

It seems to me that execs are obsessed with arbitrary margin numbers and are forgetting that a lower price will speed the product to more people, generating more revenue at a lower price point. Also, a wider circulation of media, be it music or video or whatever, often creates opportunities for additional revenue in other areas. E.g., cheaper music downloads lead to more fans leads to more tickets sold on tour. I'm not sure where that opportunity will lie with TV shows, but they've got clever marketing companies on their side, I'm sure they'll come up with something.

Also, with cable providers offering DVR units at attractive prices to subscribers, commercials seem irrelevant, for the large part. I know I sure don't watch 'em anymore, and as the technology becomes more widely available, it seems to me that advertisers will catch on and pay less for ad space. So breaking in to another market for selling the product would make sense for the future, AFAI am concerned.

I'm not one to normally get involved in this type of thing, but the trolls here really just bend over and crap on the comment board, don't they? When understandable sentences do come out, I've started attributing that to the whole 'unlimited number of monkeys with typewriters' phenomenon. For all that just have an opinion and add something intelligent to the discussions here, thanks.
post #19 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by nkhm View Post

It's very disappointing that content providers still haven't grasped the fact that they either need to step up to the table and modernise, or their content will simply be stolen and everyone will miss out.

Particularly annoying is the situation with US shows being shown several months later over here in the UK, by which time we've downloaded and watched them, resulting in lower recorded viewing figures for the UK TV channels and shows potentially being cancelled in the UK because of perceived lack of interest. It's a stupid situation and needs fixing - but apple can't fix it - fox, cbs, sony etc. etc. are the ones who need to modernise.

You make a few great points, and it seems your views are shared by a lot of our friends on the other side of the pond.

I think I understand what you mean by modernisation, but I don't think it's a technical issue. I think they've got some warped, misguided motive for delaying shows, e.g. they may think they are creating more demand by attempting to force European viewers to wait. And I'd be interested to know whether that happens in reverse as well. I love a lot of the shows that come out of the UK, and I've never even considered that they might not be broadcast simultaneously.
post #20 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quevar View Post

It's great, especially since over-the-air TV is HD quality (and not the compressed HD that cable companies spit out).

Over the air digital television is compressed and delivered as an MPEG2 transport stream. The quality you get depends upon the level of compression used at the TV station. It could very well be better than digital cable TV, but it's still compressed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quevar View Post

And, you can even hook it up to your computer with a TV tuner to watch it later.

It's a nice theory, but I have yet to find anything that does a particularly good job of this for PCs. (I've tried WinTV, BeyondTV, and Mythbuntu. Of those, WinTV worked the best but none were particularly impressive.) Maybe the elgato products are better?

You also need a fairly powerful system to watch over the air ATSC, as all decoding is done by your system CPU (with possible help from your graphics processor).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quevar View Post

Here's another sad attempt by the cable companies to get ultimate control of what we watch:
http://keepfreetvfree.com/

I realize this may be a dumb question, but: Out of curiosity, is that site being run by a cable company? It seems there is very little background information available there outside of a way to contact representatives.

I'd hope that such a measure doesn't come to pass, and I intend to make that known. No, I don't watch much TV, but when I do, I expect that local over the air TV will be there. It's very nice to have it when you need it.
post #21 of 45
Many shows don't get picked up or renewed by TV networks, but still have large bases of viewers.

iTunes would be the perfect platform for content producers to sell directly to consumers.

Instead of getting the run-around from the networks and dealing with censors,
market and sell your show on iTunes.
post #22 of 45
The TV industry and Apple would both benefit from $.99/episode sales. More people would buy for that price. It's just good business. We'll probably see most shows go for a buck.

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post #23 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffharris View Post

How much does each network get from our cable TV bills?
I bet it's a LOT less than a buck-a-show.

Even a $30 per-month plan I bet would work out better for the networks.

It is more than a buck a show, a majority of the money comes from the networks selling advertisements. The cable company also has detailed subscriber info, which allows for further marketing leverage.

Apple doesn't want to give them buyer information, and they don't get any advertising revenues from digital downloads.

An episode of Lost apparently costs about $3.5-4 million to produce, plus marketing and distribution expenses. According to Nielsen, about 5.5 million people watched Lost last week, and if the price was a buck per episode and every single person bought it, with Apple taking $0.30, they'd gross $3.85 million, which probably means losing money. At the peak of Friends' popularity, the cast was making $1 million EACH per episode, so that $3.85 million would've meant huge losses for that series.

Besides that, every single person who watches episodes online instead of on TV erodes the network's viewer base, and hurts audience numbers of programs which immediately precede and follow the show in question. And, chances are if someone pays for downloading the season, they're not going to buy the DVD later on.

Anyways, I figure they might as well try starting at $3 or $3.50 per new episode of original programming, and then charge $2 for month-old episodes, $1.50 for year-old episodes, kind of like how DVD sets charge about $1.50 per episode and come out after the season is finished.

If people don't bite, they can always lower the price, but they'll find it very difficult to raise the prices in the future if the start at $1...

I think the recording industry dropped the ball with 99 cent downloads. Should have been $2 per song or $10-12 per album... Then there wouldn't have been so much hurt from people only buying 2 or 3 tracks instead of the full album...
post #24 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by nkhm View Post

Apple really can't win - they give into the distributors and are criticised by the public, they try and please the public and are criticised by the distributors.

People are very quick to criticise apple re. music prices, movie and tv prices and soon eBook prices - when are people going to realise that apple operate in a free market economy and don't really have the strength to dictate prices (or anything else) if they are to succeed.

I think a lot of people forget how things were before the itunes store - yes - there are lots of alternatives out there now, but at the time jobs was negotiating with the music labels he had a massive uphill struggle.

It's very disappointing that content providers still haven't grasped the fact that they either need to step up to the table and modernise, or their content will simply be stolen and everyone will miss out.

Particularly annoying is the situation with US shows being shown several months later over here in the UK, by which time we've downloaded and watched them, resulting in lower recorded viewing figures for the UK TV channels and shows potentially being cancelled in the UK because of perceived lack of interest. It's a stupid situation and needs fixing - but apple can't fix it - fox, cbs, sony etc. etc. are the ones who need to modernise.

Excellent points buddy. Just stick in a couple of ads and give them for free you morons, everyone is going to download them illegally anyway. At least get your money by a couple of well placed adds, at the beginning, middle and end, and get on with it. Everyone's got 20 channels freeview anyway, let alone the tons of channels they might have on paid cable, all of which they can freely record...it's not like they are burning to download your mostly derivative and second rate content...

Get on with the times...because as soon as it's de facto standard as it's turning out to be that digital tv content will be mostly free, no one is even going to think twice about it...
post #25 of 45
I think the networks are misguided.

There's no way I'm going to watch something on my iPad if it's also available on TV. I'll be using my iPad when I'm traveling - so it won't cut into my TV viewing.

I guess there's a remote possibility that there might be nothing really worth watching on TV and I"d watch something older on the iPad rather than something marginal on TV, but if there's nothing good on, I'm more likely to just turn the TV off. The solution to that, of course, is to make better content for broadcast/cable TV.
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post #26 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by jacob1varghese View Post

Many shows don't get picked up or renewed by TV networks, but still have large bases of viewers.

iTunes would be the perfect platform for content producers to sell directly to consumers.

Instead of getting the run-around from the networks and dealing with censors,
market and sell your show on iTunes.

The content producers ARE the networks...

Who else is going to front $15-100 million to produce a 26-episode season of a show?
post #27 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Superbass View Post

I think the recording industry dropped the ball with 99 cent downloads. Should have been $2 per song or $10-12 per album... Then there wouldn't have been so much hurt from people only buying 2 or 3 tracks instead of the full album...

What was the hurt in that? That a few singers didn't get to be multimillionaires but merely millionaires?

Any performer that's worth their salt should just get off their butt and perform to make a living as everyone of us does, not expect to spend a month in the studio and then have a big fat cash cow for them. Also if their records are only good for 3 songs, too bad, they should work harder. In this day an age 99.99% of the music being made isn't worth $1 an album, let alone a song.

We are not living in the 60s, or 70s or even the 80s and 90s, when the market was flooded with great music, now no one is making any decent records by and large, partly of course due to the fact that the genre has been exhausted.

The small fish in the pond, some of them the real artists never made any money to begin with, and they had to rely on performing. Bob Dylan is nearing 70 and he plays live half the calendar year, why do any of the other spoilt brats should expect to put out a couple of hyped up crap albums to steal teenagers pocket money and be well off for their rest of their lives with royalties whilst they are strolling around doing coke in parties and yachts? They should get off their lazy buts and perform.
post #28 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

I think the networks are misguided.

There's no way I'm going to watch something on my iPad if it's also available on TV. I'll be using my iPad when I'm traveling - so it won't cut into my TV viewing.

I guess there's a remote possibility that there might be nothing really worth watching on TV and I"d watch something older on the iPad rather than something marginal on TV, but if there's nothing good on, I'm more likely to just turn the TV off. The solution to that, of course, is to make better content for broadcast/cable TV.

And to add to that, one word: slingbox app for the ipad...see how many they'll be able to sell then.
post #29 of 45
There are a lot of functions for which I can imagine the iPad being well-suited but as a replacement for a TV receiving programming via a delivery method like cable, I don't think so.

As much as a I hate paying so much every month to my cable provider, there really is no practical alternative considering in my household there are some of us that are into foreign-language programming, others following a particular sports team, etc.

Would I welcome a service that provided what I want for a lot less money? Clearly we all would. But whatever is offered has to provide the complete package for me to go that route because if I get some of what I need via Apple's subscription model yet need to take steps, and spend more money, to round out the package, it's just not going to happen. Life is complicated enough. I just want to turn on my TV and have programming available as I'm accustomed to.

I'm sure that for some consumers, a stripped-down service that offers a cheaper alternative to satisfy one's Lost fix, works out fine. But then there's the rest of us. We have come to expect the complete package, pay one bill, and not give it all another thought.
post #30 of 45
I pay about $45 a month for 120 channels of nothing to watch, why would I pay $30 a month for... the same content?

0.99 / episode = ~$18 for a season. I just went to Amazon and searched for Lost, season 1, which sells for $16.99.

This is not a competitor, per say, to Cable/Local, this is a competitor to DVD sales.

So, $1 / episode is well within reason.

$2.99 is not.
post #31 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by myapplelove View Post

What was the hurt in that? That a few singers didn't get to be multimillionaires but merely millionaires?

the only ones becoming millionaires from CD sales are the record companies. Not the song writers, session musicians or 'average' hit band.
post #32 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by reliason View Post

the only ones becoming millionaires from CD sales are the record companies. Not the song writers, session musicians or 'average' hit band.

define "average", and then we 'll talk.
post #33 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

I think the networks are misguided.

There's no way I'm going to watch something on my iPad if it's also available on TV. I'll be using my iPad when I'm traveling - so it won't cut into my TV viewing.

I guess there's a remote possibility that there might be nothing really worth watching on TV and I"d watch something older on the iPad rather than something marginal on TV, but if there's nothing good on, I'm more likely to just turn the TV off. The solution to that, of course, is to make better content for broadcast/cable TV.

This pricing affects iTunes, which includes computers and Apple TV in addition to the iPad. Computers are easily hooked up to a TV, and Apple TV is designed to be hooked up to a TV, so the networks are not misguided in that regard. However, what they are doing is clinging to their old bread bringers. Cable TV in an internet age doesn't make a lot of sense at all. They can try to slow the conversion from cable to internet based distribution of video content, but the switch is inevitable and they would be a lot better off if they had fully developed revenue streams in place for when people start dropping cable in large numbers, but that is not what they are doing. Like so many others, they are scared of the internet and shun it instead. They will soon learn that you can't shun the internet. If they refuse to offer competitive online pricing and online services on par with cable, people will simply resort to other means of getting their content online, while still dropping cable, but the networks wont be generating revenue from those means. Cable TV as we know it today will die (eventually) and the networks will not be prepared because they fought against the conversion instead of accepting its inevitability and developing a business model.

If you are a wagon manufacturer and the car is invented, you better start making cars if you want to have a future, not ban cars on any roads you own and petition others to do the same. People won't stop buying cars, they will simply find/build other roads.
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post #34 of 45
I pay pennies a show and don't use the torrents to do so.

Netflix and my PS3.
post #35 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffharris View Post

How much does each network get from our cable TV bills?
I bet it's a LOT less than a buck-a-show.

Even a $30 per-month plan I bet would work out better for the networks.

but the math is tricky. See the networks are worried about how this per month thing might eat into the holy Nielsen ratings, costing them money. Now you could say they should just put the per month money into the coffers with the ratings money but how will they. they'd have to get some kind of a report of subscriptions of each show. like the only option would have to be by season, not by ep. because episode only downloads mucks up the math even more.

I think that they should start with older shows. the stuff that's not on the air anymore. Drop those to a dollar/two dollars or put them in this per month plan. You could even perhaps do the very first season or two of still airing shows, which might actually encourage new viewers. let the current stuff stay at the higher price for now. maybe do some limited specials like CBS has where they drop the price for a well advertised week and compare download numbers.

And set it up so those that bought the SD before can add the HD for the price difference. for our ipads. that could bump a few sales.
post #36 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnexpectedBill View Post

Over the air digital television is compressed and delivered as an MPEG2 transport stream. The quality you get depends upon the level of compression used at the TV station. It could very well be better than digital cable TV, but it's still compressed.

True, it's compressed, but the comparisons I've seen indicate that the cable companies are compressing it a lot more than over the air.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UnexpectedBill View Post

It's a nice theory, but I have yet to find anything that does a particularly good job of this for PCs. (I've tried WinTV, BeyondTV, and Mythbuntu. Of those, WinTV worked the best but none were particularly impressive.) Maybe the elgato products are better?

You also need a fairly powerful system to watch over the air ATSC, as all decoding is done by your system CPU (with possible help from your graphics processor).

I'm using an El Gato EyeTV 3 hooked up to a 2.0GHz Mac mini and it works great for 1080i and 720p shows outputting to a 1080p TV via DVI/HDMI. I get about one or two missed frames per show, but I'm not sure if that is my antenna position or a fragmented drive. In either case, it's barely noticeable. The recurring recordings on El Gato work great. It's not quite as nice as the TiVo it replaced, but it's very close and substantially cheaper. Plus, it works great for watching Hulu and iTunes in my living room. It actually turns out to be nice to be able to browse the web with my wife without hunching over a laptop. I would highly recommend a similar setup.
post #37 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quevar View Post

...I'm using an El Gato EyeTV 3 hooked up to a 2.0GHz Mac mini and it works great for 1080i and 720p shows outputting to a 1080p TV via DVI/HDMI. I get about one or two missed frames per show, but I'm not sure if that is my antenna position or a fragmented drive. In either case, it's barely noticeable. The recurring recordings on El Gato work great. It's not quite as nice as the TiVo it replaced, but it's very close and substantially cheaper. Plus, it works great for watching Hulu and iTunes in my living room. It actually turns out to be nice to be able to browse the web with my wife without hunching over a laptop. I would highly recommend a similar setup.

I have the exact same setup as you do. I use Snatch iPhone remote to control the Mac Mini.

The set up is high on functionality but definitely requires some tinkering and a little training for the Mrs.
post #38 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwee View Post

What they should do if they really want to make it big is to go International. In Europe some of the shows are 1 year behind. Everyone downloads the latest episodes from pirate bay because there is no other way of watching them. Lost/Heroes etc.

There are no good legal alternatives right now.. Unless you don't want to be a season behind everyone else.

And don't say HULU.. Not accessible from Europe.

I agree, and although things are a little better in the UK now than they once were, the UK iTunes store is still a total joke compared to it's US counterpart. Most things are in SD only, with prices 2x higher than the US and of course, weeks, months, or even years out of date.

It's a farce but for whatever reason media companies in the UK seem uninterested in countering piracy with anything other than scare tactics. I'm sure one day they'll wake up to the reality of the world as the music guys finally did, but I sense it's going to be many years before they do.
post #39 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woohoo! View Post

I pay pennies a show and don't use the torrents to do so.

Netflix and my PS3.

Oh how I wish we had Netflix here in the UK!

All we have is iTunes, which is super expensive, mostly in SD, and often years out of date. Then we have Xbox Live's Zune marketplace, which has virtually no content at all (although at least what few movies they have are usually in 1080p). Finally we have the PSN Video Store, which lies somewhere between iTunes and Microsoft in terms of content, but most is in SD and almost all has only 2 channel stereo audio. Oh, and of course it's months/years out of date too.

So it's a big joke here in Europe. No wonder torrents are so popular.
post #40 of 45
Why listen to Apple? They want content for the iPad, and that's all they want out of this deal. Here's a piece of advice for content providers dealing with Apple: If you look around the deal room and can't figure out who the sucker is, it's you.

Pricing a TV show below the cost of 90% of the songs on Apple's Top 10 charts ($1.29) seems absolutely ridiculous. Apple charges $79 for iLife, which would also buy you 80 TV shows under Apple's 99 cent plan (since both have sales tax we'll ignore that). A popular TV hourlong (one worth downloading and owning) probably runs in the $4 million per episode range once it becomes successful. So Apple is equating the cost of developing an iLife upgrade (they've long since paid off the initial development costs) with around $320 million in TV production. No way Apple spends $320 million on iLife development per upgrade cycle.

Music industry got smart, lotsa songs at $1.29 now. Publishing industry got smart, e-book prices have gone up since Apple announced they were entering the market. A company that spends 6 figures developing a polished iPhone app seems perfectly justified charging $4.99 for it. And here's where they all figured out how to make it work: they use flexible pricing. the ability to price high when a product is hot, low when its not, and offer brief sales and freebies to generate interest. Apple should just let it be an open market, demand will determine what people will pay. If people won't pay what makes this profitable for the content providers, then the business model doesn't support putting TV shows on iTunes. Simple.
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