Rumor: Apple may soon provide 99 cent streaming TV show rentals

According to industry sources, Apple is currently working on agreements with major Television Studios to allow it to rent TV shows to consumers for 99 cents a piece. NewTeeVee reports that , "The TV rental program would work in much the same way that movie rentals now work through iTunes; once an episode is purchased, the consumer will have 30 days to start watching the video." The service would be offered on their next AppleTV Set-Top Box first, and once a rental is started, it will be available for 24 hours before expiring. It would also differ slightly from the current iTunes model because it would move the content into the cloud. No downloads will be necessary, so users will be able to watch the content immediately after renting it.

This move will be Apple's first step towards joining the industry's current trend. Currently, many other providers including YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, and even Microsoft's Zune Service have made use of streaming technology to deliver content to consumers. Apple is hoping that this move will increase the amount of TV Shows that are consumed through their iTunes service. This move by Apple comes just after Hulu just announced their "Hulu Plus" subscription service, which will provide access to full seasons of TV Shows at an a la carte price of $9.99 per month. However, Apple may have an advantage when it comes to content. They already have access to a vast library of TV programs that Hulu doesn't have access to.

Despite that fact, Hulu does have a major competitive edge over Apple currently -- it will be supplying its "Hulu Plus" subscription on a variety of different devices including Xbox 360, PS3, Samsung TVs and Blu-Ray Players, Sony TVs and Blu-Ray Players, Apple iPod, and Apple iPhone.
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