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For 99 cents, Amazon sells shows, Apple rents them

A number of Fox shows are for sale on Amazon's video service for the same 99 cents that Apple is charging to rent the shows.

Amazon is selling an array of TV shows from Fox and ABC for 99 cents, the same price Apple plans to charge for TV show rentals. CNET

As an eagle-eyed CNET reader noted, Amazon is selling some TV shows for the same price that Apple plans to charge for rentals.

A number of ABC and Fox shows, including hits like "Glee," are available on Amazon's service for 99 cents per episode--the same price as Apple's coming rental option. But with Amazon, the episodes can be downloaded or streamed and do not expire.

Other shows, such as AMC's Mad Men, still fetch $1.99 on Amazon's site.

Here's what Amazon says of the rights that come with videos sold on its site, including the 99-cent TV shows.

"When you buy a video, your viewing rights do not expire (except as provided in our Terms of Use)," Amazon states. "You can watch a video you own online and download it to 2 locations (TiVo, DVRs, and Windows PCs). You can also transfer a video you own to 2 portable devices. Note: Some new release movies will become unavailable for viewing or downloading for an unspecified period of time due to licensing restrictions. You will be notified about this before we process your order."

While Amazon only offers downloads to Windows machines and TiVo boxes, purchased shows can be streamed on a wider array of devices, including Macs, PCs or TVs connected to compatible devices from, among others, Samsung, Vizio, Sony, Panasonic, and Roku.

Apple announced the 99-cent video rental option earlier on Wednesday. For now it is in the U.S. only and is limited to certain programs from Fox and ABC. Apple sells a much wider array of TV shows, typically charging $1.99 for standard-definition and $2.99 for HD episodes.