Peter Kafka is reporting that Apple has been pitching a $30 per month subscription model for TV shows through iTunes. This isn’t just some anonymous tipster telling him this, Kafka claims to have heard the information from multiple sources.
Kafka’s sources say that Apple hopes to launch the service early next year, the first partner to join in the endeavor would likely be Disney. Not only has Disney been willing to experiment with Apple’s services but Steve Jobs is also Disney’s largest single shareholder.
There isn’t much information on how this service would actually work, but it seems that it would be $30 per month for any participating partners content. New episodes would likely be downloaded the way season passes are now, but I wonder if the files would have a 30 day shelf life like iTunes movie rentals do.
Whatever the terms I’m sure I would jump in immediately, I’m not currently a cable subscriber and watch most of my TV shows on Hulu but would love to get more content on my HDTV through my Apple TV.
Update 12/10/09: “Analysts” told AppleInsider that the recent purchase of NBC by Comcast could hinder an iTunes subscription service. Colin Dixon, an analyst at Diffusion Group also believes this to be the case. From Reinhardt Krause‘s report:
If Apple or others come to a Comcast-controlled NBC looking to cut content deals, they could be out of luck, Dixon says.
“They’ll just say no,” he said.
Update 12/27/09: iTunes Monthly TV Subscriptions Coming