Apple stops offering TV show rentals through iTunes, sees iTunes in the Cloud as replacement

Image via MacRumors

Apple has stopped offering TV show rentals through iTunes today, Apple has confirmed to AllThingsD. Now that TV show rentals – which Apple heavily pushed for prior to the launch of the second-generation Apple TV – are missing, users can only purchase a full episodes. The advantage of full episodes of the $0.99 rentals is the ability to re-watch the episode an unlimited amount of times, for just a dollar more than the formally existing rental price.

iTunes customers have shown they overwhelmingly prefer buying TV shows, Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr said. iTunes in the Cloud lets customers download and watch their past TV purchases from their iOS devices, Apple TV, Mac or PC allowing them to enjoy their programming whenever and however they choose.

Since these $0.99 TV show rentals were a cornerstone feature alongside the current Apple TV model, Apple has a solution. In fact, Apple’s solution came on the first day of August: a cloud-based storage locker for TV episodes. Now, a user can purchase full TV episodes from their little black box, stream the episodes to their Apple TV for the initial viewing, and stream them again from the cloud for every future stream.

As far back as September of last year, Warner Brothers’ CEO was skeptical of the show rental system from Apple:

The major film and TV studio chose not to participate in Apple’s TV show rental service as they felt the price “was too low and would have hurt sales of full seasons.” Meyer also stated that he prefers his company’s current $2.99 TV show purchasing model through iTunes. This way they make more profit and the user gets to keep the show.

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