Report: Apple TV to stream 99 cent TV show rentals

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Apple is reportedly in talks with TV studios to sell them on the idea of renting TV episodes for 99 cents rather than selling downloads for $1.99.



According to a report by NewTeeVee, the rental program Apple is promoting would work just like existing movie rentals: users would have 30 days to start watching the show, and would then need to finish within 24 hours of starting playback.



Unlike movie rentals and other iTunes sales however, the TV programming would be streamed from Apple's cloud servers. Such a service would seemingly be ideal for the rumored iOS-based replacement to today's Apple TV, which is expected to lack a conventional hard drive and instead reply upon on-demand cloud streaming and local wireless sharing.



The recently unveiled Hulu Plus is similarly seeking to determine what customers will pay to access TV shows. It now charges $9.99 per month for access to shows on ABC, Fox and NBC.



Apple has previously dragged hesitant TV and movie studios to the iTunes market and forced them to drink, typically starting with its closest ally, Disney, and slowly winning over other companies, selling them on the merits of direct downloads and rentals.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 77
    ihxoihxo Posts: 562member
    99 cents is too much for a TV rental.
  • Reply 2 of 77
    kingkueikingkuei Posts: 137member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ihxo View Post


    99 cents is too much for a TV rental.



    I respectfully disagree. Sometimes, I miss a TV show because I failed to record it, or maybe I saw a new show mid-season and decided I'd like to view the rest. Renting for $0.99 is like buying music for $0.99. It's cheap enough to be an impulse buy. And even though you don't actually OWN the TV episode, I think the economics favor that route. I don't have to pay double or more to buy just one episode, which sucks up storage space. I'm not forced to pay full price for a whole season. If it streams over the web, then I can presumably watch it anywhere I go.



    In truth, I don't care to own my TV episodes (or movies for that matter) in digital form the way I wanted my music in digital form simply because with video, visual compression artifacts are far more noticeable than in audible music. And video is much larger in terms of file size than audio as well. So if I can pay rock-bottom price just to rent one to watch it and no intention or need to own it, I like this idea.
  • Reply 3 of 77
    danielswdanielsw Posts: 905member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ihxo View Post


    99 cents is too much for a TV rental.



    No it isn't.



    We've paid for TV for decades by having to put up with irrelevant ads.



    This is a big relief and more equitable, as you more directly pay for what you want to watch as you go. Kinda like paying tolls on toll roads.
  • Reply 4 of 77
    themousethemouse Posts: 10member
    I love it! Or I will if it happens.
  • Reply 5 of 77
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ihxo View Post


    99 cents is too much for a TV rental.



    How much do you spend a year on a cable/sat subscription? How many new programs, not reruns of older shows but actual first run shows, do you watch within that year?



    Divide the former by the latter and that is how much you are paying per show you watch. Take that and divide it by the number of eps in a season and that is how much you are paying per eps.



    I highly doubt that your number will be significantly lower that $0.99.
  • Reply 6 of 77
    quinneyquinney Posts: 2,523member
    I hope this happens. Even without this, it looks like cable companies are starting to

    understand that people don't like their current offerings.



    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100708/...ewarnercable_1
  • Reply 7 of 77
    tnsftnsf Posts: 203member
    How's this for a report: None of these reports are anything close to what Apple is actually going to do with TV!



    All these Apple TV rumours are so far off the mark its amazing that people pay attention to them.



    Don't you get it? Apple doesn't want sell a box that you hook up to a TV. Apple wants to sell a TV. An actual TV. Which just happens to be loaded with Apple services and software.



    The next Apple TV is a TV.



    My two cents.
  • Reply 8 of 77
    danielswdanielsw Posts: 905member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TNSF View Post


    How's this for a report: None of these reports are anything close to what Apple is actually going to do with TV!



    All these Apple TV rumours are so far off the mark its amazing that people pay attention to them.



    Don't you get it? Apple doesn't want sell a box that you hook up to a TV. Apple wants to sell a TV. An actual TV. Which just happens to be loaded with Apple services and software.



    The next Apple TV is a TV.



    My two cents.



    Nope. Too many logistics headaches.



    They'd have to have all sorts of sizes and enclosures. No room to display them in retail stores.



    And that's to say nothing of ever-changing technologies. Too expensive to keep up with.



    Remember that Apple iPod portable speaker thing? Dead in the water. Too cumbersome. Too awkward. Too stupid.
  • Reply 9 of 77
    zeromeuszeromeus Posts: 181member
    When I watch something, I always want to watch it again later... and potentially share with my friends. I'd rather spend the extra $ and GET the episode than to pay 99 cents just to see it once.
  • Reply 10 of 77
    estolinskiestolinski Posts: 140member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TNSF View Post


    How's this for a report: None of these reports are anything close to what Apple is actually going to do with TV!



    All these Apple TV rumours are so far off the mark its amazing that people pay attention to them.



    Don't you get it? Apple doesn't want sell a box that you hook up to a TV. Apple wants to sell a TV. An actual TV. Which just happens to be loaded with Apple services and software.



    The next Apple TV is a TV.



    My two cents.



    Too expensive I think. They would have to make multiple sets (screen sizes) to satisfy various needs. I don't think they are prepared to do that. They already have the technology to make a box that ANYONE can use.
  • Reply 11 of 77
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    Being able to rent just one or two missed eps for .99 would be very nice. I?d pay it happily.



    I wouldn?t watch a whole season that way?it?s around the cost of a Season Pass, where you get to keep the episodes, watch them any time, and have ?free reruns? (at the expense of storage space).



    Also, come on, content-owners... give us 48 hours! Where?s the harm?
  • Reply 12 of 77
    iq78iq78 Posts: 256member
    Subscription is the way to go with video content...



    Netflix has the right idea with their Instant View....



    Expand Netflix instant-view to ALL DVD released movies & shows (not just hodge podge selection.) Include ALL current network broadcast shows after a week delay. Add some la carte ordering option for cable and premium channels but in the form of ON DEMAND.... And you can take over the world.



    What I'd pay:



    $50/month for ALL DVD releases (movies and shows) Basically FULL Netflix on Demand.



    $15/month for ALL network broadcast shows after a week delay (hell... even allow 15 or 30 second HULU type advertising.. or standard advertising with fast-forward option.)



    $2 to $10 /month a-la-carte for premium channel ON DEMAND with week delay.



    I'd happily pay close to $100 / month in total to get EXACTLY what I want when I want it, including all DVD movies and TV shows on demand... All in one place with high quality, reliable and easily searched.



    I don't want to own movies or shows. I don't want to rent movies or shows. I want 24/7 access on demand of movies and shows, and am willing to pay a steep subscription to get the full catalog.
  • Reply 13 of 77
    tnsftnsf Posts: 203member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DanielSW View Post


    Nope. Too many logistics headaches.



    They'd have to have all sorts of sizes and enclosures. No room to display them in retail stores.



    And that's to say nothing of ever-changing technologies. Too expensive to keep up with.



    Remember that Apple iPod portable speaker thing? Dead in the water. Too cumbersome. Too awkward. Too stupid.



    I absolutely disagree. I think the TV market is complex because nobody has ever made it simple. It would be an easy market for Apple to enter. Selling TVs is not rocket science.



    What would it actually take? Well, they just need a product which is really one TV scaled to different sizes (20, 30, 40, 50, etc). They could probably make do with 3-4 sizes. Do a version refresh once a year with maybe a point update mid-year. Hang them in Apple stores (hey look, there are TVs behind the Genius bar already!). Sell them online. Apple faithful would gobble them up.



    If Apple can be successful in the phone, computer and music player market they can easily be successful selling TVs. They are arguably a far less complex technology and there are no carriers or service provider relationships to worry about. Really, what would be more difficult to make and sell: a computer with a full OS or a TV?? I think Apple can handle a TV.



    TV companies want us to think TVs are complicated. They want us to think that the technology changes every 5 minutes. In reality though I think the market would be easy to crack. If you can put a product on the shelf that looks good people will buy it. If you're Apple lots of people will buy it.



    The flip side is sticking with an Apple TV box model, which makes no sense. Apple wouldn't make any margin selling a $99 box. And they wouldn't make any margin selling 99 cent TV shows. There is no money it it. They have to sell the TV and make big margin on a big ticket item. Then they make a small recurring profit on each TV show and movie they sell/rent. Its the iPod and iPhone model all over again.



    There is a reason Apple TV is called Apple TV: because the real product that they've been planning for years is the iTV. Its an actual TV.



    iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTV... the Apple ecosystem wherever you are.
  • Reply 14 of 77
    sinisterjoesinisterjoe Posts: 134member
    99 cents doesn't sound like a bad price but considering Americans have a compulsive need to watch, on average, 4.5 hours of TV per day that works out to $135/month if they were renting it all from iTunes. Most of those people will keep at least a minimum cable/satellite subscription for another $50/month. I just don't see any wide appeal for it. I can't imagine people buying a special device just to watch a couple shows on now and again. $9.99/month + ads and cheap hardware just makes a lot more sense for the typical American. Maybe outside of the US it's a different story.
  • Reply 15 of 77
    libertyforalllibertyforall Posts: 1,279member
    Now THAT would be something *IF* it was MOVIES we were talking about!!!! It would be the end of Redbox, my $1 solution...
  • Reply 16 of 77
    estolinskiestolinski Posts: 140member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TNSF View Post


    How's this for a report: None of these reports are anything close to what Apple is actually going to do with TV!



    All these Apple TV rumours are so far off the mark its amazing that people pay attention to them.



    Don't you get it? Apple doesn't want sell a box that you hook up to a TV. Apple wants to sell a TV. An actual TV. Which just happens to be loaded with Apple services and software.



    The next Apple TV is a TV.



    My two cents.







    The flip side is sticking with an Apple TV box model, which makes no sense. Apple wouldn't make any margin selling a $99 box. And they wouldn't make any margin selling 99 cent TV shows. There is no money it it. They have to sell the TV and make big margin on a big ticket item. Then they make a small recurring profit on each TV show and movie they sell/rent. Its the iPod and iPhone model all over again.



    There is a reason Apple TV is called Apple TV: because the real product that they've been planning for years is the iTV. Its an actual TV.




    They would still make 30% at least on the .99 model.
  • Reply 17 of 77
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 1,399member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SinisterJoe View Post


    99 cents doesn't sound like a bad price but considering Americans have a compulsive need to watch, on average, 4.5 hours of TV per day that works out to $135/month if they were renting it all from iTunes. Most of those people will keep at least a minimum cable/satellite subscription for another $50/month. I just don't see any wide appeal for it. I can't imagine people buying a special device just to watch a couple shows on now and again. $9.99/month + ads and cheap hardware just makes a lot more sense for the typical American. Maybe outside of the US it's a different story.



    Not too different here in Canada. You can easily pay $60 to $80 just to get the "TV Channel Package" that includes the channels you want, and you end up paying for a whole whack of channels you'll never watch.



    I vastly prefer the on-demand pay-for-what-I-want-to-watch model that Apple is popularizing. And I don't want to pay with my time. I want to pay cold, hard cash. $0.99 is comfortable since I'd probably just watch 5 shows a week, so that works out to $20 to $25 per month for my TV expenses.
  • Reply 18 of 77
    xero910xero910 Posts: 41member
    Someone care to point out how $1 rentals are a good deal when you can already buy the episodes for $2. Save a dollar watch it once? Pay extra dollar, keep it forever..



    They better not remove the ability to purchase shows. I don't want to rent my videos, I want to own them.
  • Reply 19 of 77
    casey4147casey4147 Posts: 35member
    Not too keen on the price per episode for a rental. I'm not big on rentals, I'd rather own as I'll go back and watch favorites over and over. My problem now is hard drive space.



    Here's a better idea, if we're gonna do streaming. $10-$15 for a season pass, and you can watch it as many times as you like once it's authorized to your account, but it's streamed instead of downloaded. Same rules for number of PCs, iPods, iPhones, etc - no reason why you couldn't watch it on the go on your iTunes-account-authorized iPhone and then show the good parts to your family when you get home on the 55" LCD. This way, if you hear about a cool new show a couple of episodes in, catch-up is easy.



    There's one copy - up on Apple's servers - so no big storage headaches.
  • Reply 20 of 77
    prof. peabodyprof. peabody Posts: 2,860member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sherlockholmes View Post


    How much do you spend a year on a cable/sat subscription? How many new programs, not reruns of older shows but actual first run shows, do you watch within that year?



    Divide the former by the latter and that is how much you are paying per show you watch. Take that and divide it by the number of eps in a season and that is how much you are paying per eps.



    I highly doubt that your number will be significantly lower that $0.99.



    This is a meaningless argument.



    The average teenager watches 4 to 6 hours of TV a day, and the majority of the shows are half hour ones. In any fairly normal household in North America, the total hours of shows watched in a year is an astronomical figure.



    I could just as easily argue that at $.99 a show that this will cost the family thousands of dollars a month. The counter to that is that you wouldn't necessarily be renting all the shows, but there are many factors that would affect your argument too.



    Large numbers of people have recorders of some kind as well and shows are repeated endlessly as you yourself point out. No one misses a show anymore unless they really want to.



    $.99 is way too much for a rental of a show, especially if we are talking half hours shows. It's a fantastically, ridiculously high price for something you don't even get to own. Especially when for a $30 cable bill, you get access to thousands and thousands of shows.
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