If you're one of the 10 people in the world that actually simply rented a bunch of television shows from iTunes over the last year or so, you're going to need a tissue. Apple has decided to pull the plug on all TV show rentals from iTunes, leaving only two options for the viewing of TV-related media: the purchase of individual episodes or the "Season Pass" for a year of your favorite show. This should come as no shock to the public, but does point toward a couple of future options for Apple as far as how they handle television content, the first being the relatively new "iTunes in the Cloud" service we first saw a few months ago.
The second option is of course the one that's been proven successful since its inception: allowing users to pay for the show once and keep it forever. One of the two groups on board with the TV episode rental program's 2010 price drop was Fox as owned by News Corp, (the other being Disney, a group which Steve Jobs is and was on the board of directors and is the company's largest individual shareholder,) they recently noted the following about the now-axed rental program:
“After carefully considering the results of the rental trial, it became clear that content ownership is a more attractive long-term value proposition both for iTunes customers and for our business. To further enhance the value of ownership, we are working with Apple to make content available within their new cloud-based service.” - Fox
Meanwhile Apple has been watching the numbers, racking them all up on their abacuses, and have found that yes, indeed, users do not like to rent television shows. The following message comes from Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr speaking with AllThingsD:
“iTunes customers have shown they overwhelmingly prefer buying TV shows. 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.” - Tom Neumayr
What do you think? Will you miss your ability to pay an amount of cash to have a TV show for a set amount of time? Or are you more keen on paying JUST a bit more to keep that TV show forever?