Report: Apple prepping 99-cent TV show rentals

Television shows could be a reality on iTunes. Apple is said to be in talks with Fox, CBS, and Walt Disney to allow customers to rent TV shows for 99 cents.

Jim Dalrymple Special to CNET News
Jim Dalrymple has followed Apple and the Mac industry for the last 15 years, first as part of MacCentral and then in various positions at Macworld. Jim also writes about the professional audio market, examining the best ways to record music using a Macintosh. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. He currently runs The Loop.
Jim Dalrymple
2 min read

iTunes Store

Apple could be on the verge of giving users the option to rent television shows from its iTunes Store.

Citing "people familiar" with discussions between Apple and News Corp., Bloomberg reported Tuesday that 99-cent TV show rentals are being talked about. Users would have to watch the shows within 48 hours of purchasing the rental, according to the report.

The rental system sounds very similar to the one Apple uses for movie rentals on the iTunes Store, where users have a specified amount of time to watch the rented media before it expires.

Bloomberg also says Apple is in talks with CBS, Walt Disney, and Fox parent News Corp. Apple CEO Steve Jobs is a board member of Disney and has been its largest shareholder since Disney purchased Pixar Animation Studios in 2006. (Editors' note: CNET is published by CBS Interactive, a unit of CBS.)

The TV show rental may replace the long-rumored iTunes subscription service. Apple has been said to be working on a subscription service for television networks since at least 2005.

Apple's update for the Apple TV is rumored to be coming any time now and will reportedly be powered by the iOS, the same operating system running on the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.

Apple typically holds an event in September to unveil its newest toys for the holiday shopping season. While the event is normally focused around iPods, it has included announcements regarding music and other media in the past.

There is no official word yet when, or if, Apple will hold an event this year.