Report: Apple Preparing Movie Rentals
Rumor site Think Secret is reporting that Apple is preparing to expand iTunes beyond music and television into the realm of movies, with an announcement slated for August 7 at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference.
Unlike its music and TV downloads, which are perpetually owned by the user once purchased, Think Secret says movie downloads will be offered on a rental basis and will expire after a certain period of time or number of viewings. Apple reportedly made this concession after movie studios would not budge to its demands.
Although many Think Secret claims about Apple's plans have proven inaccurate as of late, the site says Apple has forged agreements with Walt Disney, Universal Studios, Paramount Pictures, and Warner Bros., with other deals in the works.
The first indication of Apple's intentions to sell films via iTunes surfaced in March after a Disney Channel original movie was discovered for sale through the service. Initially priced at $1.99 USD like TV shows but later raised to $9.99 USD, "High School Musical" ran 1 hour and 39 minutes long and was a little under 500MB in size.
Apple was rumored to be readying a new touch-screen video iPod to go along with debut of movie downloads, but the product has failed to materialize thus far. Such a device is now not expected until next year at the earliest, although Think Secret claims Apple is planning to update its popular iPod nano with larger capacities and new colors come August.