A Daily Showing of iTunes

Look out, bears: Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) has once again turned the mobile content market on its head. Thank Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert; fans of Comedy Central's late-night dynamic duo are being given the option to subscribe to downloads of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart or The Colbert Report for $9.99 though the iTunes online store. The fee covers a month's worth of shows, or 16 episodes. (Single viewings will also be sold for the usual $1.99 per-video price tag.)

The move marks Apple's first foray into the subscription model for digital downloading, a strategy which has been common among competitors such as Napster (Nasdaq: NAPS  ) and RealNetworks' (Nasdaq: RNWK  ) Rhapsody. However, unlike those services, where you effectively rent the music, customers own the episodes of The Daily Show that they download via iTunes.

And there's another wrinkle: The downloaded episodes will be completely free of commercials. Uh-oh, TiVo (Nasdaq: TIVO  ) . Let me explain. Last week, I wrote that the DVR pioneer should breathe easier because Apple's new Mac mini, though blessed with features for storing and playing back digital entertainment, wasn't equipped to record live TV. Now it may not matter. With this deal, the growing iTunes video library, and the emergence of media-savvy PCs like the Mac mini, it's becoming increasingly clear that consumers will someday be able to forgo traditional TV altogether, downloading only what they want, and replaying it commercial-free.

Don't bet on that happening overnight, of course. And why worry anyway? The here and now is much more interesting. Comedy Central's new deal with Apple has the potential to alter the economics of mobile content, again. And that can mean only one thing: Disney (NYSE: DIS  ) , CBS (NYSE: CBS  ) , NBC, News Corp. (NYSE: NWS  ) , and, well, every other content provider on the planet, might also find themselves on notice.

Set the DVR to record. Related Foolishness is coming on:

TiVo is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor pick. High tech. Biotech. Nanotech. Any tech. David Gardner and his band of Foolish analysts cover it all for subscribers to Motley Fool Rule Breakers, and they're crushing the market by an average of more than 20% as a result. Find out which stocks are behind the big gains by asking for anall-area access pass. It's free for 30 days.

Fool contributorTim Beyersdoesn't yet have a video iPod. It's on his list, OK? Tim didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this story at the time of publication. You can find out what is in his portfolio by checking Tim's Foolprofile. The Motley Fool has an ironcladdisclosure policy.


Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (0)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 512214, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 9/21/2014 10:29:01 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...


Advertisement