FT: Apple to Test $1 iTunes TV Downloads with iPad Launch?

Financial Times is reporting that Apple might just be set to test drive $1 iTunes TV downloads as part of their iPad launch in March:

Some television networks agreed to the lower prices after months of negotiations, and having initially resisted Apple’s push. Media executives are under pressure from declining DVD sales and cut-rate rental services such as Redbox, that offer rental DVDs for $1.

Not all networks say they've been approached, and being networks some may still refuse, but if the test is successful they'd be complete idiots not to jump on board (which means, of course, some won't).

Competing with "free as in pirated" is a tough model but Apple showed music how to do it with the $0.99 price point (while it lasted). Hopefully the networks pay attention. Selling iTunes TV for more than it costs on DVDs isn't only consumer-hostile, it's simply bad business.

[Financial Times via Macrumors]

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • $1 isnt bad at all, but their current $3 i believe they are, is a butt-rape. Youre almost better buying a TIVO at that point and recording your own shows and converting them to mp4.
    $1 is a lot more appealing.
  • I'd buy a lot of shows at a buck a pop
  • $1.00 is the Magic price point. If it hit's that price I for one will buy that stuff. I have bought Kojak, The Bob Newhart Show, and Hill Street Blues on DVD. Guess what, every one of those TV shows seasons stopped being offered before being completed. I have a few seasons of each with no hope of ever completing my collection of any. I have been waiting years. Sent E-mails, and, ignored. Why? Corporate Greed. Why should I start any more season collections of TV shows. They wonder why Dvd sales have declined. Can I get my money back? NO....never. They buying public at large is not stupid. A class action lawsuit is in order here. I'm surprised it has not happened yet. At least at $!.00 it's not a Rip-off......
  • I would definately buy tv shows for $1 Can't buy much these days for $1
  • Another thing they should consider is the price people will pay for episodes that didn't get recorded or go interrupted for what ever reason. I would venture to say that most people that watch television don't plan to save all of their favorite shows, but they certainly won't want to miss an episode. So if something happens like their DVR gets filled up while they're on vacation, or there's some sort of network interruption during the show, they can know that they only have to spend a buck to watch their episode. If the price is too expensive, people might look to the "free" option.
  • I still wouldn't buy entire seasons of shows at that price as it can add up very quickly. I currently use a combination of cable with DVR, Netflix, and Hulu to watch TV. The difference is that they are either subscription or ad supported so I don't have to worry about how much I watch.
    The problem I see is that there is a difference between music and TV. Most people will listen to a song they buy dozens of times so $1 seems reasonable for that. Most people, however will watch a single episode of a TV show maybe 2 times at most so even $1 is abtut steep. I would rather they have a subscription model for TV show and movie rental and then I could possibly ditch cable and/or Netflix.
  • I agree that $1 is definitely a sweet spot for digital content. Generally, if it costs the same or less that what it costs for the DVD/Bluray disks when it is discounted then I am definitely all for a download since it is much more flexible and I won't have to rip/encode the show from the DVD. It is even a pain to download and encode the show so I would be willing.
    Also, as MrC mentioned, the subscription model (which was mentioned on TiPb before) is no longer on the table?
  • is this promo works on Iphone 4?