Is Apple Finally Getting Serious About TV?

Illustration for article titled Is Apple Finally Getting Serious About TV?

$1 TV shows, down from $2: sounds like a great plan, but is it real? The FT seems to think so, claiming that the changes will hit the iTunes store at the end of April, corresponding with the iPad launch.

Apple's current pricing scheme puts most SD TV content at $2 an episode, with HD content coming at a $1 premium. The new plan would likely just move the pricing levels down by a dollar and be done with it. (It would also go a long way to expanding Apple's vision of a digital media dysutopia: In the future, man will feed iTunes one (1) dollar, for which he will be granted a single unit of Apple-Approved Digital entertainment. </scifi>)

But the FT doesn't stop there: They also claim that Apple is still actively pursuing a $30 "best of TV" subscription service, which would roll selected content into a bundle, for which users would pay a monthly fee, and that Apple is being careful to avoid linking the Apple TV to discussions about either proposal, because the prospect of people watching downloaded TV on their actual televisions is apparently terrifying to content providers, for some reason. Ha, could Apple care any less about that poor box?


So, how would this actually go down? I'd wager that a limited first wave of $1 shows will serve as a sort of pilot program. Once, or if, these shows make up their price decrease with larger download volume, it'll be much easier to convince the rest of the content providers to go along with the new scheme. Got a better theory? Throw it in the comments. [Financial Times]

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Lower prices? That's obviously the worst thing that an old media company can do. The real winning strategy is to increase prices, watch sales die, and then start suing working moms for piracy.