Google hopes to compete with iTunes, offer pay TV on YouTube

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Google is reportedly looking to get into the pay-per-episode TV business with YouTube by offering streaming content for purchase via a service that would compete with iTunes downloads.



According to Peter Kafka of MediaMemo, multiple sources have indicated that YouTube hopes to offer streaming TV episodes for a fee. The plan would be similar to what Apple already offers with iTunes: a $1.99 cost per episode. Both sides are said to currently be in early negotiations, but are "optimistic" that a deal can be reached.



But a key difference for consumers would be the fact that the YouTube stream would cost the same price as iTunes, even though it would seem to offer less functionality. iTunes TV and movie downloads are saved locally on the user's system, where they can be shared with a host of Apple devices, including iPods, iPhones, the Apple TV, and other machines.



But YouTube and TV executives reportedly feel that this is simply a "perception problem," and have cited studies that most people who download TV episodes only watch them once.



"It?s also possible that YouTube may skirt the issue by launching a TV rental business without the big hits that Apple and Amazon offer," Kafka said. "One possibility: It could start by moving immediately to long and mid-'tail' shows and videos that aren?t available other places, and don?t have to match existing prices."



Google acquired YouTube, the Internet's largest video destination, in 2006 for $1.65 billion. The Web site already offers some ad-supported TV shows for free, and is looking to get into the movie rental business as well.



YouTube also plays a strong role in the iPhone, with a native application included on the device.



As YouTube looks to land a deal for TV episode purchases in 2010, Apple has reportedly been negotiating with networks to provide a $30-per-month subscription plan to deliver TV episodes via iTunes. Reports have suggested that Apple also hopes to launch its new service in early 2010.



Apple's subscription proposal is said to be based on the existing iTunes desktop software, and is not based on any forthcoming hardware like a new Apple TV or the company's long-rumored touchscreen tablet. Industry executives are said to be "intrigued" by the prospect of an iTunes subscription plan, though cable networks are reluctant to sacrifice existing relationships with providers like Comcast.



In October, Apple updated its Apple TV software to version 3.0. The redesigned interface includes a new main menu that gives users instant access to content, including the integrated YouTube.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 43
    Start your copiers Mountain View
  • Reply 2 of 43
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member
    It's looking increasingly to me like Google and Apple are going to totally own everything in terms of software for the next decade, with Apple taking the high end and Google filling in what would otherwise be Microsoft's place with the free/lesser junkier stuff for the masses.



    How long till Microsoft just gives up on the whole idea of being anything but a (crappy) OS maker? I predict major job cuts, dissolution/reorganisation and the cutting loose of most of their divisions at Microsoft by November 2012 at the latest.
  • Reply 3 of 43
    kent909kent909 Posts: 731member
    This model would cost me more than cable. Never going to work
  • Reply 4 of 43
    It may be true that most people only watch iTunes TV shows once (this is true for me most of the time, but not all the time) but the point is that I watch the shows on my Mac at home, my Mac while travelling or occasionally my iPhone on the train/subway or airport. You just can't do this with YouTube.



    Not only that, but YouTube has been suffering serious lag recently (so has Netflix for that matter). Are we going to get the constant picture quality changes has bandwidth changes throughout the early evening? I hate that.
  • Reply 5 of 43
    eaieai Posts: 417member
    Google tried this before with Google Video and shut that down after a year or so...
  • Reply 6 of 43
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    So when does Google pull YouTube off the AppleTV and the iPhone - 2010 or 2011?
  • Reply 7 of 43
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    So when does Google pull YouTube off the AppleTV and the iPhone - 2010 or 2011?



    They might just never support the PPV model on those devices. Teh non-flash YouTube seems to have about one eighth of the bandwidth anyway, mine is always stalling even on my home WiFi.
  • Reply 8 of 43
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kent909 View Post


    This model would cost me more than cable. Never going to work



    But what about people who don?t want much TV. This could save them money each month.
  • Reply 9 of 43
    What other idea is Google going to copy from Apple? We can all thank Google CEO for this. This thief was allowed to sit on Apple board for years, and now recreating Apple ideas one by one.



    What a shame!
  • Reply 10 of 43
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by eAi View Post


    Google tried this before with Google Video and shut that down after a year or so...



    That was a few years ago and Google bought the successful YouTube when they realized that Google Video wasn?t working.



    2010 should be the year of streaming. I expect to see a lot of media extenders at CES this year, we?ll see YouTube with 1080p, better Netflix streaming quality and presumably a new AppleTV that can push 1080p. Apple can?t lose the living room or it risks losing in other areas. Apple really has to follow MS? Zune and Xbox strategy here. Meaning, even if they aren?t making money in the short term from it they still have to do it or risk losing more money in the long term in other areas.
  • Reply 11 of 43
    I know this off-topic, but MS never lets us down with there issues



    Absolutely priceless http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8388253.stm



    Not blue screen death now going for black theme :lol
  • Reply 12 of 43
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,683member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    But what about people who don?t want much TV. This could save them money each month.



    Not only that. I have two young kids and much as I don't mind them watching all the usual programming I cannot abide the incessant repeats (my comatose kids, mouth half open, starring blankly at some lame show they have already watched several times). A per episode or per season rental could potentially allow them to keep watching Hanna Montana et al whilst going back to the excitement of the weekly episode, yet with the flexibility of the download viewing model.



    I'd love to be able to chose the specific programs / series I could get and ditch the junk. Sports need to be included and as someone already mentioned - the prices need to drop. I suspect that the way we watch TV in 10 years will be VERY different from the way we do it now. I certainly hope so.
  • Reply 13 of 43
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by souliisoul View Post


    I know this off-topic, but MS never lets us down with there issues



    Absolutely priceless http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8388253.stm



    Not blue screen death now going for black theme :lol



    With so much HW, legacy SW support and a huge installed base it?s not unexpected. This one is pretty minor as seems to be only some ACLs that were incorrectly altered.
  • Reply 14 of 43
    to be honest, apple tv subscription and spotify will do me fine
  • Reply 15 of 43
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paxman View Post


    Not only that. I have two young kids and much as I don't mind them watching all the usual programming I cannot abide the incessant repeats (my comatose kids, mouth half open, starring blankly at some lame show they have already watched several times). A per episode or per season rental could potentially allow them to keep watching Hanna Montana et al whilst going back to the excitement of the weekly episode, yet with the flexibility of the download viewing model.



    Yeah, thats it, make sure Google is the one thats responsible for your kids only watching a show one time
  • Reply 16 of 43
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    But what about people who don?t want much TV. This could save them money each month.



    They'd have to watch less than 20 shows a month!



    My cable bill is 40 and change (taxes, fees and surcharges) but for the sake of easy math 40 bucks.



    At 2.00 a show/episode (1.99) that is 20 shows (20 x 2.00 = 40.00)



    20 shows in 30 days... I dunno...



    And will Googles approach be able to allow one to watch on their tv?



    I'd much rather pay a subscription for a range or quantity of shows like 20 shows or less is $20.00 or 20 - 30 shows is $25.00 or 30 - 40 shows is $30.00 AND THEN be allowed to select my favorite shows and make my own tv line-up and use Apple TV to beam it so I can view on my tv set.



    I have the cheapest cable option offered because out of the channels I have, there are those channels I never use and only some channels offer a show or two I find interesting that I would like to pluck from them and interesting shows of other channels, pluck them and have my Mon Fri night time line-up 7:00 - 10:00 pm and watch some sports and movies on the weekend!



    That would be my dream of a method of finally getting what I pay for on the boob tube instead of having to put up with everybody's mindless junk, I just have to put up with my mindless junk!
  • Reply 17 of 43
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    I'd much rather pay a subscription for a range or quantity of shows...



    Me too, but I know people that don?t watch much TV at all.



    I?m pretty sure Google?s approach will be to utilize the YouTube players that are cropping up in media extenders as a (primary) method of transport.
  • Reply 18 of 43
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    They'd have to watch less than 20 shows a month!



    My cable bill is 40 and change (taxes, fees and surcharges) but for the sake of easy math 40 bucks.



    At 2.00 a show/episode (1.99) that is 20 shows (20 x 2.00 = 40.00)



    20 shows in 30 days... I dunno...




    20 shows is still 5 a week, how much TV does a person need? Besides, with Hulu and other websites (ABC.com offers virtual HD quality) you can watch way more than this for free.



    I'm saving about $80 a month from dumping Cable. I paid all that just to get HBO/Showtime and Comedy Central - but you have to pay for all the shite to get the ad-ons...
  • Reply 19 of 43
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,683member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post


    Yeah, thats it, make sure Google is the one thats responsible for your kids only watching a show one time



    Actually, I'd like to make Apple responsible. It would lighten the burden of my daily life considerably. But I'm afraid I am the one. I would just like a little help where possible.
  • Reply 20 of 43
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,683member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    I'd much rather pay a subscription for a range or quantity of shows like 20 shows or less is $20.00 or 20 - 30 shows is $25.00 or 30 - 40 shows is $30.00 AND THEN be allowed to select my favorite shows and make my own tv line-up and use Apple TV to beam it so I can view on my tv set.



    Exactly! And increase the rental library of movies ten fold. Apple would sell a LOT more hardware and I am sure they'd be the first to agree that this is the way forward. Unfortunately there are a lot of players in this jigsaw and the cable companies will find tooth and nail to keep the status quo.
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