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Apple sells over 1M videos in less than 20 days

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Apple today announced that iTunes Music Store customers have purchased and downloaded more than one million videos since they debuted on October 12.

In a statement released today, the iPod maker said top downloads included music videos from Michael Jackson, Fatboy Slim and Kanye West; Pixar's "For the Birds" and "Boundin'"; and episodes of ABC's hit TV shows "Lost" and "Desperate Housewives."

iTunes music store shoppers can currently choose from over 2,000 music videos, Pixar short films and hit TV shows for just $1.99.

"Selling one million videos in less than 20 days strongly suggests there is a market for legal video downloads," said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. "Our next challenge is to broaden our content offerings, so that customers can enjoy watching more videos on their computers and new iPods."

Music videos are available from artists including Madonna, U2, Eurythmics, Coldplay and Kanye West, and animated shorts are available from Academy Award-winning Pixar Animation Studios. In a deal with ABC Disney, the iTunes Music Store also offers current and past episodes from the two most popular shows on television, "Desperate Housewives" and "Lost" as well as the new drama series "Night Stalker" and the two most popular shows from Disney Channel, "That's So Raven" and "The Suite Life of Zack and Cody."

The iTunes Music Store also features more than two million songs from the major music companies and over 1,000 independent record labels, 11,000 audiobooks, gift certificates and exclusive music not found anywhere else online.
post #2 of 27
Way to go, Steve!

One video sold every two seconds
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post #3 of 27
So much for the doubt that videos for the iPod just wouldn't sell.

It'll be interesting to see what rate they can keep up though. Obviously a lot of new iPod owners are going to want to show off their new kit with a video or two, and more will be told by how long they keep buying new content. Mind, most of those video sales already made must be for use in iTunes ... the power of neat new features, even if they are low res for now.

Of course I'm yet to buy any myself. They'll need a deal with HBO for that!

Edit: and a US billing address. Damned regions / content licensing.
That's one area where DVD's most definitely rule. And I hope Blu-Ray will do too, so long as I can find it hacked.
post #4 of 27
[QUOTE]Originally posted by fuyutsuki
[B]So much for the doubt that videos for the iPod just wouldn't sell.

It'll be interesting to see what rate they can keep up though. ...

Of course I'm yet to buy any myself. They'll need a deal with HBO for that!

Sounds like a plan. Do you think Apple/Pixar have been talking to those guys? And does Steve have a Suggestion Box?

8)
post #5 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by fuyutsuki
So much for the doubt that videos for the iPod just wouldn't sell.

No iPod is needed. I have about 500GB of video content on my Mac, including 21 videos download from iTMS in the past 20 days. I have no video capable iPod yet.
post #6 of 27
Now Apple needs to add an "Indie" part to the video section so that all of the people who don't need distribution rights or have their own media contracts can sell their own shorts, trailers for student films and Flash animations to the public. Combine the mass appeal of Podcasts to the design and business model of iTMS videos!!! Apple just needs to supply a bit of support and editorialzing as it does with Podcasts now for free.

There could be a "freebies" area to the iTMS, just like the used album section of many physical music stores. The free"Stanford" and "political speech" areas are great, though they aren't advertized well enough.

The morphing of iTunes, vid podcasts, videos will continue and it is going to be interesting to see what eventually arises. This is only the beginning.
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post #7 of 27
I just wish that the downloaded video files were higher resolution than the screen size of the viPod. At least offer users a choice (large vs. small) so that we can enjoy higher quality video content on our home computers.

I guess that point is to preserve the DVD as a "quality" medium of video distribution, but it sure is discouraging my tentative online video purchases.
post #8 of 27
Things I'd like to see happen at the iTMS video store:

1. An Indie section like MacGregor suggested ... for paid video podcasts and more.
2. Higher res options for an extra dollar or so - I bought a Nano and won't be upgrading to video iPod any year too soon, like many.
3. Deals with HBO, Warner, and as many content suppliers as they have on the music side. I'm sure Steve is working on this as we speak.
4. A better deal for 'foreign' customers like myself, though that's in the content contracts more than just Apple's own decision
5. Bollywood!

Like macslut I've already more than the odd video on my Mac, and I for one just couldn't function without VLC! 8)
post #9 of 27
It seems PBS would be the next easiest step for content. NPR has great free content all over the Podcast universe and I would hope some of that content could be worked out fairly easily contract-wise. I know PBS is not a single unified entity, but they have the experience of getting educational and entertainment programming out to schools and the public.

All of that content sitting in a vault somewhere. Think of getting the Sesame Street that was aired the day you were born. I'd buy up all of the episodes that were "brought to you by the letter "G" and the number "3."
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post #10 of 27
It's a pretty good start but they sold 1M nanos in about as much time. Assuming they sold the 5G units as quickly, that would be about one video per 5G iPod, though they've only been available for a week or two vs. maybe three for the video downloads.
post #11 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by MacGregor
It seems PBS would be the next easiest step for content.

PBS would be good...what about the ton of old TV shows that are no longer shown on TV. These should be an easy sell for multiple reasons:

1. The lower resolution (vs. DVD or HD quality) won't seem like such a big deal.

2. The media companies that own that stuff aren't making any money off that stuff right now anyway.

3. It could be iTunes Music Store exclusive.
post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Chris Cuilla
PBS would be good...what about the ton of old TV shows that are no longer shown on TV. These should be an easy sell for multiple reasons:

1. The lower resolution (vs. DVD or HD quality) won't seem like such a big deal.

2. The media companies that own that stuff aren't making any money off that stuff right now anyway.

3. It could be iTunes Music Store exclusive.

I think this would be cool, the varying organizations involved could play up the idea that the money could be used to support more productions and more public media. I think they'd get a larger portion of the money because they don't have to pay for the bandwidth, packaging, media or any of that. Given the low resolution, they might not need to do much work to clean it up, not as much as DVD buyers would expect.

That said, I wouldn't buy any, in part because of the resolution issue, and that getting the DVD sets of TV shows costs about as much as getting a quarter-resolution image.
post #13 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by JeffDM
That said, I wouldn't buy any, in part because of the resolution issue, and that getting the DVD sets of TV shows costs about as much as getting a quarter-resolution image.

Yeah, this seems to be the main competition, and I think the Apple video offerings (resolution, price, limitations) are comparativelyweak. (That said, I may try one or two U2 videos).

Music singles seems a strong sell to me. I am quite surprised at the video sales. We'll see if they keep up. 20 million can easily be attributed to a "oh I'll buy one and see how I like it after all it's only a couple of bucks" sale.
post #14 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by fuyutsuki
Things I'd like to see happen at the iTMS video store:

2. Higher res options for an extra dollar or so - I bought a Nano and won't be upgrading to video iPod any year too soon, like many.

find someone that has a video iPod, download an episode of lost, and watch it on a tv with the iPod AV cable. It's amazing. It's obviously not high-definition, but its just as good or better than most torrents out there. The compression looks great during bright, dark, slow, and fast scenes. I think most people complaining about resolution have messed up their own compression or haven't seen a downloaded show on a tv.
post #15 of 27
I wonder how long it is before Apple introduces something like "Airport Express Video"? It seems like the next logical step.

Somehow I would not even be surprised to find that it is essentially "ready to go"...awaiting results of video sales before release.
post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by ipodandimac
find someone that has a video iPod, download an episode of lost, and watch it on a tv with the iPod AV cable. It's amazing. It's obviously not high-definition, but its just as good or better than most torrents out there. The compression looks great during bright, dark, slow, and fast scenes. I think most people complaining about resolution have messed up their own compression or haven't seen a downloaded show on a tv.

I really don't understand why you are saying that. Of course it's not HD, it's not even SD! Good encoding doesn't make up for poor resolution. I personally don't care that it is better than most available torrents. A show like Lost is broadcast in HD, the iTunes version is an excessive downgrade.
post #17 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by fuyutsuki
Higher res options for an extra dollar or so.

How high resolution are you suggesting? There's now way the content providers are going to let Apple sell videos of high enough resolution to play on your computer screen for an "extra dollar". Doing so would cut in to the DVD market.
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post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by fahlman
How high resolution are you suggesting? There's now way the content providers are going to let Apple sell videos of high enough resolution to play on your computer screen for an "extra dollar". Doing so would cut in to the DVD market.

That doesn't make sense. An episode at $3, spread over 24 episodes would cost $72. The current $2/ep. would cost $48. Amazon wants $37 for the first season, the list SRP is $60. Even at $2 an ep, I would argue that the studio might be making more money on the download than they do per DVD in the set. The wholesale price of DVDs is something like 50% of list price, Apple gives about 60% (at least for music) and the studio doesn't even have to pay for replication, packaging or shipping.
post #19 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by fuyutsuki

Edit: and a US billing address. Damned regions / content licensing.

so true
post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by fahlman
How high resolution are you suggesting? There's now way the content providers are going to let Apple sell videos of high enough resolution to play on your computer screen for an "extra dollar". Doing so would cut in to the DVD market.

Resolution is one issue, but timeliness is the other.

No one applauded the resolution at the Jobs-note, they applauded getting a TV show the next day!!

Video's on DVD will always be worth the extra money for special stuff, but the DVD's at 3 for $10 are a waste of gas to deliver, waste of space to display, abd a waste of plastic and packaging to produce. Now that every grocery store sells them, they are ripe for the same downturn that hit CD's a few years ago ... a cheap, commodity. I think it is almost time for 50% of TV and animations and shorts to go media-free digital to save time and resources and DVD's and CD's should remain for the audio-videophiles and for those wanting the deleted scenes and commentary extras. I'll still buy DVD's of Lord of the Rings and such, but why buy DVD's "Lost" if you only want to see it at TV res. and right away?!!?? It's not like HD is going to make Desparate Housewives that much better to watch ... well maybe I take that back...
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post #21 of 27
This is actually a great example of business strategy, specifically doing a relatively low risk pilot of a new product in order to gauge market interest.

As some other sites have mentioned, the new iPod is basically an iPod + video, rather than being primarily marketed as a video device. Apple teamed up with Disney plus the record labels in order to introduce a relatively small amount of content, again to gauge demand.

Now that Apple has sales figures to show market demand, I suspect that content producers are going to be banging on Apple's door, rather than the other way around. We could finally be seeing the thin edge of the very large wedge that is truly flexible, on demand content delivery.
post #22 of 27
Look out Amazon.
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post #23 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Xool
Look out Amazon.

I recently added the video iPod to my arsenal of iPods and was curious about a few things:

1. Is the video ipod capable of holding and playing full length movies or was it not designed for that?

2. Will iTunes eventually add a movie selection to the store

3. When do you think Apple will add a larger variety of tv shows
post #24 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Cato988
I recently added the video iPod to my arsenal of iPods and was curious about a few things:

1. Is the video ipod capable of holding and playing full length movies or was it not designed for that?

2. Will iTunes eventually add a movie selection to the store

3. When do you think Apple will add a larger variety of tv shows

1. Sure. Why not? You just need to find a way to get the content. Currently Apple (at least) is not selling full-length films in this format.

2. Probably.

3. Soon we would hope.
post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Cato988
I recently added the video iPod to my arsenal of iPods and was curious about a few things:

1. Is the video ipod capable of holding and playing full length movies or was it not designed for that?

2. Will iTunes eventually add a movie selection to the store

3. When do you think Apple will add a larger variety of tv shows


1. Yes. You need to get the movie somehow, divx/ xvid/ etc... then "export to iPod" via QuicktimePro7. voila.

2. & 3. Yes! Apple is working on this. Right now studios are turning green with envy because they see Walt Disney making money off digital downloads. More will follow when they smell the cash... and the massive losses due to bittorrent.
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by sunilraman
1. Yes. You need to get the movie somehow, divx/ xvid/ etc... then "export to iPod" via QuicktimePro7. voila.

2. & 3. Yes! Apple is working on this. Right now studios are turning green with envy because they see Walt Disney making money off digital downloads. More will follow when they smell the cash... and the massive losses due to bittorrent.

Specifically I would expect to see some older, rarer shows pop up there. These are vaulted and unlikely to see DVD anytime soon.

They probably ought to put together a "album-like" deal...something like $19.99 or $24.99 for a whole season of episodes or $1.99 for the single.
post #27 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Chris Cuilla
Specifically I would expect to see some older, rarer shows pop up there. These are vaulted and unlikely to see DVD anytime soon.

They probably ought to put together a "album-like" deal...something like $19.99 or $24.99 for a whole season of episodes or $1.99 for the single.


well.. remember that Wired article about digital video/ music/ film libraries? the idea is to open up as much as possible, as fast as possible, don't worry about making the content find people (marketing and promos), just make it easy for people to find the content.
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