HD TV shows now on the iTunes Store, NBC returns [updated x2]

Apple today announced that with iTunes 8.0, HD TV shows are now available on the iTunes Store, including content from longtime holdout NBC/Universal. The new HD offerings are priced at $2.99 per episode, or $1 more than the SD versions of the same shows, and can be viewed through iTunes on a computer or from the Apple TV. Content from NBC includes the popular shows “Heroes,” “The Office,” “Battlestar Galactica,” and “30 Rock,” while select programs from ABC, Showtime, and CBS are also available in HD.

“The return of our shows to iTunes is terrific news for everyone who loves television and the ease and convenience of Apple’s iTunes,” said Jeff Zucker, President and CEO, NBC Universal. “And now, by offering consumers a variety of new options, our fans have even more ways to enjoy our content.”

“We are thrilled that NBC is back on iTunes in time for the Fall TV season,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “NBC has some of TV’s most popular shows and now customers can purchase and download them from iTunes in SD or stunning HD.”

Update: In addition to the new HD TV show offerings, Apple has added the ability to pre-order upcoming movie releases.

Update x2 According to the iTunes Store, each HD-quality episode purchased includes an SD version for viewing on an iPod or iPhone. From the iTunes Store: “Every HD episode comes with a standard definition version, perfect for viewing on the go on your iPod and iPhone. When you sync your show to your iPod or iPhone, iTunes will automatically transfer the right version.”

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