Bloggers: Apple Preparing Digital Movie Rental Biz - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
News

Bloggers: Apple Preparing Digital Movie Rental Biz

The buzz is that Apple will launch the download service with a new video iPod, some say as early as the company's upcoming developer's conference on Aug. 7.

Bloggers are speculating that Apple Computer Inc. CEO Steve Jobs will unveil a movie rental service through the iTunes Music Store at the company's upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco on August 7.

Behind Tuesday's buzz is ThinkSecret.com, which Apple sued in the past in a larger legal assault on breach of confidentiality. But some question whether the timing is right. After all, the conference typically caters to, well, developers. Apple did not return requests for comment.

"Apple has a history of launching products with services, and it would seem strange that the movie download service would launch without having the new larger display hard drive-based iPod ready to go," said Chris Crotty, senior analyst for consumer electronics at research firm iSuppli Corp.

Apple is expected to launch two new iPods this year: one between now and September, and another between October and December. Crotty describes the first as an iPod Nano update, a flash-based successor that supports video. The other video iPod will have a larger display screen.

"It's likely that Apple will launch the movie download service in conjunction with a new video iPod," Crotty says. "Apple operates on a reverse razor blade model. They 'give away' the blades to sell the razor."

That means the iTunes Music Store drives sales for hardware. So launching a new service now without the hardware to drive sales isn't Apple's normal mode of operation.

If not next month, when? It can't happen soon enough for research firm eMarketer senior analyst James Belcher. "I'm quite sure Apple won't pass on the chance to add movies to its slate of downloadable stuff on iTunes," he said. "But what do you get. Do you get a movie that can be burned to DVD and watched in the living room? More likely, you'll get a movie you can watch on your computer or iPod."

For months, Apple had been trying to persuade movie studios, such as Paramount Pictures, The Walt Disney Co., Warner Bros. and Universal Studios, the rental model can work at sites other than Movielink, CinemaNow, and Starz Entertainment-owned Vongo.

The downloadable files will likely have digital rights management code attached to each movie, where you watch it for "72 hours then it self destructs," Belcher said, suggesting they may rent for $2.99 each. For example, digital-rights management (DRM) software comes along with each movie downloaded from Movielink LLC to monitor use and limit the length of time a movie will play back.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
Commentary
IT Salary Report 2020: Get Paid What You Are Worth
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  2/12/2020
Slideshows
10 Analytics and AI Startups You Should Know About
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  2/19/2020
News
Fighting the Coronavirus with Analytics and GIS
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  2/3/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
IT Careers: Tech Drives Constant Change
Advances in information technology and management concepts mean that IT professionals must update their skill sets, even their career goals on an almost yearly basis. In this IT Trend Report, experts share advice on how IT pros can keep up with this every-changing job market. Read it today!
White Papers
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll