CBS Will Sell Some Shows On iTunes For 99 Cents

CBS is prepared to sell some of its shows through iTunes for 99 cents, though which shows and how many episodes of each is yet to be determined, according to reports.  The Financial Times quoted CBS CEO Les Moonves as confirming the price, though another CBS source said no deal was imminent.

The move is a continuing progression of television content moving online, whether through live streaming, free portals such as Hulu and a la carte pricing.

CBS already has joined in the TV Everywhere initiative, with its core network and several other channels, including The CW and Showtime, working with cable companies to put their content online free to paid subscribers of cable provider Comcast and others.  It also joined in the AT&T Entertainment effort, which allows users to view content from a variety of networks for free - and you don't have to be an AT&T customer to access the site.

The pending agreement with iTunes could come in time for the launch of the iPad, whose 4:3 aspect ratio perfect for standard-def television viewing. Shows in high definition, which are broadcast in a 16:9 aspect ratio would show those pesky black bars across the top of the screen above and below the video. No date has been announced for the iPad's official launch, though Apple's website says they should be available in "late March."

There's no word whether the shows sold through iTunes would also be allowed to carry ads. Networks had been fighting the 99 cent price, saying it was too low, but if they can carry advertising, that may make it more palatable.

To this point, the biggest source of legal online network content so far has been, which allows a certain number of ad breaks varying in length throughout each broadcast. Of course, NBC Universal is one of the major partners in Hulu, and Comcast has made a successful bid for the entertainment giant - though regulators have yet to rule on the legality of that deal.

Count the iTunes 99 cent purchase price as the latest effort by traditional television content providers to figure out how to make money on this here Internet thingy.
Tags:  itunes, TV, Television, ipad
rapid1 4 years ago

I think this is where TV is going anyway, although in a different form. Would it not be awesome to just get the shows you watch and nothing else? Although you may have to schedule it a week after it plays on TV, it is almost possible now. At least for most network shows on my PC. I almost always watch Saturday night live a week late, you can also get Survivor and a lot of other shows this way now.

Fanfoot 4 years ago

You can ALREADY buy some CBS shows on iTunes (Star Trek Deep Space Nine for example) for $.99. How is this news?

Dave_HH 4 years ago

Deep Space Nine is pretty old. The story is about current content/shows.

rapid1 4 years ago

Were do you think this will go Dave in general though. As I stated I see a lot going this way. I also see all the providers (internet) rolling out bigger bandwidth service, which to me makes this even more a likely norm before long. I am not talking about the iPhone or app availability, I am talking about Media going even more instant availability through the net.

digitaldd 4 years ago

CBS owns which has a lot of really cool stuff available for streaming. Old shows/new shows/classic tv/etc. It just isn't as high a quality as Hulu.

rapid1 4 years ago

Yes and all the other networks are doing it to. When I miss a show that I watch it is usually available on the channels website a week later.

Post a Comment
or Register to comment