Feeds

NBC to Apple: 'You're fired!'

Apple to NBC: 'You can't fire me! I quit!'

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

The Americanized version of "The Office" will soon disappear from Apple iTunes. The Reg couldn't care less - we prefer the original, and we have no interest in watching even our favorite TV shows on an overpriced, DRM-shackled, handheld status symbol - but many uncultured Apple-loving web mavens are sure to be very upset.

Late yesterday, as reported by The New York Times, NBC Universal informed Apple that it would not renew its contract to sell "The Office" and other TV shows over iTunes, a ridiculously-popular digital music and video download service. The contract won't expire until December, but Apple responded by telling the world that it would remove NBC shows from iTunes "beginning in September" - i.e. very shortly.

But the bigger news is that Apple actually responded to us when we sent a note requesting comment. "Hi Cade," a spokesman wrote. "We put out a press release this morning on NBC: http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2007/08/31itunes.html". At least one El Reg hack is convinced that the world is ending.

An anonymous NBC source told The Times that the American media conglomerate was unable to reach an agreement with Jobs and Co. on pricing, and this was confirmed by Apple's press release: "We are disappointed to see NBC leave iTunes because we would not agree to their dramatic price increase," said Eddy Cue, Apple’s vice president of iTunes. "We hope they will change their minds and offer their TV shows to the tens of millions of iTunes customers."

According to the release, NBC demanded "more than double the wholesale price" for its shows, an increase that would have forced Apple to raise its iTunes retail price from $1.99 to $4.99. Apple also pointed out that the other four major American broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, FOX, and The CW) and more than 50 cable networks are still selling their brand new shows at the old $1.99 price, but over the coming months, these contracts are set to expire as well.

What Apple didn't say is that NBC is iTunes' top video supplier, responsible for about 40 per cent of all downloads. Jobs and Co. dominate the music and video download market, but more than one crack has turned up in its relationships with the big studios and record labels, companies that often grumble about iTunes' low retail prices. Universal Music Group, the world's largest record label, recently declined to renew its contract with Apple, reserving the right to remove its songs from iTunes at any time.

That said, EMI Music recently gave Apple the go-ahead to sell its songs without the usual DRM shackles. This is the only good thing we have to say about iTunes. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Kaspersky backpedals on 'done nothing wrong, nothing to fear' blather
Founder (and internet passport fan) now says privacy is precious
TROLL SLAYER Google grabs $1.3 MEEELLION in patent counter-suit
Chocolate Factory hits back at firm for suing customers
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.