Naturally, Apple is ecstatic. Quoting CEO Steve Jobs from a statement issued this morning: "It took almost two years to achieve this milestone with iPod. We can't wait to get this revolutionary product into the hands of even more customers this holiday season."
Investors believe that Apple will; they bid up the shares more than 2% higher in early trading.
For the record, I also believe the iPhone will be a runaway success. The latest from the Mac's daddy has captured imaginations in ways that devices from Palm (Nasdaq: PALM ) and Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM ) haven't. Only Nokia (NYSE: NOK ) , whose sleek handsets have become the standard in many overseas markets, strikes me as a real threat to the forward march of the iEmpire in wireless.
But that's also why I can't stop scratching my head. According to Variety, Apple may be contemplating a price cut for TV show downloads it sells through iTunes to $0.99. If that's true, it could help explain why General Electric's (NYSE: GE ) NBC unit left Apple for Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN ) .
Jobs isn't this stupid, is he? Yeah, I know, talk about a dangerous question. Trouble is, Variety's story points to an utter lack of understanding of what consumers want. We may prefer to buy music, Steve, but we prefer to rent video. Who cares whether you'll sell shows for $0.99? Sign me up for a $9.99-a-month rental plan. You'll make me, and your studio partners, giddy as you joyfully sell a few million new iPods and iPhones.
But if you don't, Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX ) will, once its Watch Now service is optimized for some other gizmo. Maybe even one made by Nokia. You don't really want that, do you?
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