Doesn't look like NBC will be joining iTunes' $0.99 TV show rental service anytime soon, as CEO Jeff Zucker thinks it's not enough to charge for 22-44 min. of... whatever soon to be cancelled sitcom they've shoved up against that inane reality show on that other network:
We do not think 99 cents is the right price point for our content. ... We thought it would devalue our content," Zucker said at a Goldman Sachs investor conference. He pointed to the fact NBC shows are already available for $1.99 for download on Apple's iTunes service.
But that's $1.99 to buy the show and watch it as many times as you want, not rent it and watch it once (or however many times you'd actually watch it during the 48 hour window). Want to watch it again next week, you gotta give NBC another $0.99, which brings them almost right back to that $1.99 and you still don't own it. Want to show it to a friend a month later, that's another $0.99, giving NBC almost $3, or more than they would have made for selling it to you.
But who am I to explain volume pricing, below impulse-buy thresholds, and -- you know -- match to one of the big media networks. After all, Zucker is the guy who yanked NBC off of iTunes entirely, only to come crawling back a short time later.
Fox, meanwhile, is keeping their options open, describing their involvement in the $0.99 program as a short term test.
Maybe someone should show them that Rolling Stone interview with Steve Jobs where he explained they aren't competing with other forms of purchase, they're competing with free.