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NBC Universal reaching Apple TV via Netflix

Fans of Saturday Night Live, Monk, and series (old and new) of things like 30 Rock, The Office and Law & Order can look forward to free streaming access to these shows on their iPad or Apple TV, thanks to Netflix.

This is because Netflix has inked a new deal with NBC Universal under which Netflix subscribers will be able to watch movies and television shows from NBC television network and NBC Universal’s popular cable channels over the Internet for just $8.99 a month.

Yeah — that’s right, the same NBC Universal that doesn’t want to rent TV shows to Apple TV users for 99-cents each is willing to stream them to Netflix users in exchange for a flat monthly fee. But I’ll let a media business expert figure out the whys and wherefores of that.

The Netflix deal is quite wide-ranging. It means you can expect a slew of current and previously-viewed TV shows, including those mentioned above and others such as Friday Night Lights.

This is all highly interesting, of course, because while NBC Universal won’t paly ball with Apple over iTunes TV streaming for the Apple TV it is willing to do so with Netflix. Apple’s move to support Netflix on the Apple TV underscores some movement within Apple’s strategic team toward recognition of occassional need to ink strategic partnerships.

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