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Apple Wants TV Episodes to Cost 99 Cents on iTunes

Here's something we didn't know earlier this week when we were talking about the spat between NBC and Apple's iTunes Music Store. According to Variety, Apple has been telling TV networks and studios that it would like to cut the price of episode downloads to 99 cents, essentially half of their current $1.99 price tag. That would make an episode of "The Office" cost the same as the latest Kanye single.

Networks aren't so thrilled about this plan, though, worrying that it would cut into their revenue from the sale of episodes. (Apple's counterargument: People would download more shows, making up for the price cut.) According to Variety, the biggest fear is that cheaper single episodes would cut into the sales of DVD boxed sets, which are key moneymakers for the networks and studios. Would people still buy the "Heroes" boxed set for $39.99 when they could download the season's 23 episodes for just $22.77 instead?

Personally, I'd still buy the set; it would still come packed with commentaries, deleted scenes and extra features that I couldn't get on iTunes. In fact, 99 cent downloads would make me likely to spend more money on TV, downloading favorite single episodes and not feeling that I'd already spent too much money by the time the DVD set came around. But what about you? Are networks right to feel skittish? Or do you think the price-slashing would be a good move?

Join The Conversation
Entertainment Entertainment 9 years
hey bluebird, it was actually the other way around -- Apple claims NBC wanted them to charge $4.99 an episode (though NBC now says that's not true)
gigglesss gigglesss 9 years
that would be fabulous. my money would be spent in there more often for sure
coffee_bean coffee_bean 9 years
I want that too. I would buy even more shows, but to be honest I feel a little ridic. just buying them for a dollar since they are FREE on TV, although you can't watch them whenever you like unless you have tivo
bluebird bluebird 9 years
I thought NBC left their contract with Apple and iTunes because Apple wanted to charge $4.99 per episode?
LauriJon LauriJon 9 years
If they don't go for the .99 why don't they just split the difference.
sosweetnsingle sosweetnsingle 9 years
that's good!
horkusone horkusone 9 years
I would definitely buy more shows at half price. Apple has the right idea. And, just like some of you have said, I would still buy boxed DVDs. I like having all the extras that come with them. NBC should listen to Apple.
LadyLibertine LadyLibertine 9 years
I wonder what that would be in Australian, doubt that cheap. going by the difference in price of music here and there here $1.69
Allygator Allygator 9 years
I would still buy both for sure
663red 663red 9 years
I would not pay for free TV to watch on a mini screen. Why? TIVO all the way.
SexyNeverLeft78 SexyNeverLeft78 9 years
I still don't understand why ppl buy episodes (or music, but I'll stfu on tha one lmao)? Wouldn't buying Tivo just be cheaper? I have never bought anything from Iunes and a price drop isn't going to make me start now
komler komler 9 years
I would be far more likely to buy on iTunes. But I'd also want the actual physical DVDs of shows I love, and want to watch the extras for. The ability to watch on an actual television set not made by Apple, is also a big bonus in terms of DVDs.
missquiet missquiet 9 years
I hope they drop the price. Whenever I want to buy a show I end up purchasing a song instead, since it's a dollar less and will get at least 10 times as much play. I've only bought two shows on iTunes, and only because I was stuck overnight in an airport. When I buy a boxed set, it's because I really love the show and want the packaging and special features, things a 99 cent download would not give me.
beingtazim beingtazim 9 years
i'm not that impressed with the quality of the shows on itunes. i bought all of the last season (3) of BSG that way and the eps are quite pixelated - not DVD quality at all - i would rather buy the dvd in the future.
tsokolate213 tsokolate213 9 years
i like this idea... i havent bought a single episode of any tv show on itunes... if the price is just .99, ill definitely buy...
miss-britt miss-britt 9 years
OMG that's the best thing i've heard since the Ipod touch. Too bad the office isn't on itunes anymore. If only they could cut down the price of itunes plus now. I think i'm the only who's made about paying 1.29 for one song.
La-Belle La-Belle 9 years
they def need to do this...i would dl epis right and left!! just another way for me to spend $$ on dumb shit. the networks need to stfu and just do it
Neural Neural 9 years
Fantabulous idea. I would certainly DL more eps.
sodria sodria 9 years
This is a great idea. I would actually buy more episodes if this is the case. :)
ptotheenguin ptotheenguin 9 years
Hmm.. at 99 cents, I'd be more likely to buy some single episodes, if, for example, I missed an episode or wanted to try a new series. But I still wouldn't download the whole season; I'd rather have the DVDs, especially since you can find them on sale if you keep an eye out. So this might actually be a good idea for the networks if there are many others like me our there.
Phasekitty Phasekitty 9 years
It would definitely be a good move! A lot of networks are streaming their shows for a few weeks after they air online for free anyway (I know I caught up on a couple of Grey's and Lost episodes that way) and slashing the price for iTunes seems logical. When I had to spend $1.99 just because my TiVo hiccuped with my season pass to The Office I was a little annoyed, but I'd definitely feel better and buy much more if it was only 99 cents (as cheap as that sounds, it's just my mentality). Plus I drop tons of dough on TV on DVD just to have the convenience of it all right there and on my TV.
WhatTheFrockBlog WhatTheFrockBlog 9 years
It's a good move but I don't care too much. I really wish they'd slash the prices of movies. I really don't want to pay $10 for a movie I can only watch on my teeny iPhone screen or crappy laptop when I can buy a DVD for not much more.
yoWassup15 yoWassup15 9 years
that would be awesome!!! like kazagirl i don't put full seasons on my iPod. i just buy episodes that i missed or that i really loved. i love box tv sets how else will i be able to watch the bloopers and episodes with commentaries of my favorite actors. studios are just insane. all they worry about is money, don't they already have enough money?
suziryder suziryder 9 years
I think the price cut would be a brilliant move. I'd definitely buy more episodes of my favorite shows if they were only a buck a pop, and I wouldn't cut back on buying the DVD sets of my favorite shows. In addition, I wouldn't ever buy a box set of my less-than-favorite shows, like Law and Order, for example, but I would buy a couple episodes if they were only a dollar. That means MORE SALES, nbc! What's your problem?
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