Anything to Fear From Apple?

9:25 AM Apple is pitching a $30/month iTunes video package

November 3, 2009

2 Min Read
Anything to Fear From Apple?

9:25 AM -- News today is that Apple is pitching a $30/month iTunes subscription for video service, which would presumably provide unlimited on-demand access to the thousands of TV show and movie titles in its iTunes store. Is it truly something to fear or just more over-the-top video noise? My early vote is noise, with a caveat.

You obviously think about the potential impact of such a product on telcoTV and cable cord cutting. But realistically, it’s only discussions at this point -- far from a well defined product. Beyond that, I question whether cable networks and other programmers are seriously interested in helping to destroy the traditional subscription TV model. They generate billions in fees from it. Why would they forsake that, in the hopes that this over-the-top video thing might work out?

Here comes my caveat. There is something to be said for hedging your bets. There certainly is a population of consumers that will migrate away from the subscription model, or never take it to begin with. Who better to court that crowd than Apple? They have a track record and 65 million iTunes users.

Products like a potential iTunes video subscription will have their place, and will affect the traditional video model, perhaps in a profound way. But they won’t replace it. They’ll help to keep telcoTV and cable providers honest -- constantly evolving and innovating that tried and proven subscription video model. Don’t look for it to go anywhere, anytime soon.

— Bernardin Arnason, Managing Partner, Pivot Group , and Chairman, TelcoTV 2009

Interested in learning more on this topic? Then come to TelcoTV 2009, the telecom industry’s premier event for the exploration of a comprehensive entertainment convergence strategy, to be staged in Orlando, Fla., November 10-12. For more information, or to register, click here.

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