The Networks and the iPad

Just before he was about to deliver the message about the new iPad, Steve Jobs was talking to networks trying to get them to cut prices of the shows they sold on iTunes to 99 cents.  The cut will increase purchases, offsetting the lowered price, but the networks are balking, taking a page from the book of the music industry.  While download sales increased when single tracks could be sold on iTunes, it spelled the death of album sales.  It’s not quite a fair comparison, since music sales were slumping before iTunes started selling single tracks. Says the Financial Times: “… most companies have resisted the idea as it would be viewed as a rival to existing pay television services that have proven stable and lucrative during the recession.” Apple has also floated the idea of a monthly $30 subscription for what it is calling the “best of television” which would be in partnership with Disney, News Corp, CBS, Time Warner and Viacom.

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