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Apple pushing for lower TV episode pricing

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By Charles Starrett

Contributing Editor
Published: Tuesday, January 26, 2010
News Categories: iTunes

Apple is putting pressure on U.S. television networks to lower their pricing for TV shows offered on the iTunes Store, according to a new report. Citing people close to the discussions, the Financial Times reports that Apple is suggesting that episode pricing be dropped form $2 to $1, bringing prices more in line with that of full-season DVD sets. The push is seen as part of Apple’s long-term strategy for the tablet, and help spur demand for TV shows on the iTunes Store, sales of which have “frustrated” company executives. A person familiar with the talks said Apple “is looking to change pricing dynamics. That’s what they did to the music industry. The difference between the TV industry and music is this one has good economics.” The report also states that Apple has been floating the idea of a lower-cost, $30 video subscription service, but has so far met with resistance from most of the networks.

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Comments

1

apple is behind the idea of elimenating free broadcast t.v. So they can charge for it., Who do they think thay are kidding. screw apple. We have a right to FREE TV

Posted by john rohigh on January 26, 2010 at 7:24 AM (PDT)

2

Really, John? It would be nice if you had some references to back up your claim. I don’t believe that to be true, at all. In fact, I would welcome a lower TV episode price from Apple - (1) Watching TV when I want w/out paying a monthly DVR fee (2) Better quality picture/sound than with my cable provider (ATT Uverse) (3) Not having to pay for a bunch of channels I don’t/won’t watch. I say Go Apple and get me my long-awaited on-demand, a-la-carte TV!

Posted by Seth D. on January 26, 2010 at 8:36 AM (PDT)

3

I have to agree. The price of TV episodes is is too high. I also think that half-hour episodes should be half the price of hour episodes. Although the $30 video subscription option sounds great to me.

Posted by Gino Cerullo on January 26, 2010 at 8:38 AM (PDT)

4

I agree with #3.  For this reason I only buy hour-long shows (which are really only about 43 minutes anyway).  This year I thought the pricing for certain CBS series was good: $18 for SD, $28 for HD season (about 24 episodes I hope).  Shows for $50 per season are kidding themselves IMO (esp. for previous seasons).

Posted by Dyvim on January 27, 2010 at 8:00 AM (PDT)

5

Apple needs to do this to keep up with the DVD pricing. When a title gets older it is heavily discounted, Apple is left with full price seasons that are not downloaded.  They already can’t compete with Amazon’s MP3 pricing and stand to risk losing market share with video content.

Posted by AF on January 27, 2010 at 8:55 AM (PDT)

6

After being unable to find it anywhere else, I recently downloaded an episode of “Archer” from iTunes. As if paying full price for a half-hour long episode wasn’t bad enough, it was only available in HD, which raised the price to $2.99. I hope Apple enjoys those three dollars, because they are the last they will be getting from me until they change their price structure for TV shows.

Posted by J.P. on January 27, 2010 at 4:53 PM (PDT)

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