Rumor: Apple Negotiating for 99¢ iTunes Streaming TV Rentals

God, I really dislike reporting on rumors that come from unnamed, unidentified sources (all it does is boost Apple’s stock, in this case, and provides free positive press), but NewTeeVee is reporting that “sources say” Apple is trying to negotiate with TV programmers to let it rent TV episodes via iTunes for 99¢. Presently, iTunes provides SD quality TV episodes for $1.99 or $2.99 for HD via download. The new 99¢ service would leverage Apple’s upcoming cloud-based offering and stream the rentals — with a 30-day play window — directly to users’ computers and devices like the future Apple TV (which may be an actual TV or tiny TV adapter client, depending on who you ask). So, on the face of it, the rumor doesn’t sound too off base. It also signals that offerings like Hulu’s new $9.99/mo Hulu Plus service and Netflix’s instant streaming service are threats to Apple’s current revenue stream. Personally, I’d rather go with unlimited access to Hulu Plus — knowing already I’ll be watching more than 10 episodes a month.

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Filed in: Content Providers, Industry Buzz, Software