Apple’s music and media conference today may reveal Apple TV support of Netflix, which would allow streaming of thousands of titles from the Netflix library under one subscription rate. The news comes via multiple sources including Bloomberg who say the media event may reveal a higher-definition iPod Touch and improved iTunes service.
According to insiders the new Apple TV will sell for $99, a lot less than the current price of $229 (160GB). Other rumors indicate the Apple TV will be loaded with Apple’s iOS — the operating system found on iPhones and iPads. This means Apple apps will work on the Apple TV, but raises questions of whether or not users would “swipe” their TV display to change channels.
Most likely the Apple TV (also rumored to be branded the iTV) will come loaded with 16GB storage but will only support 720p resolution video. Yeah, it’s HD. But 1080p capability would be reason enough to buy the $100 player.
As far as rental fees, Bloomberg reported iTunes users would pay 99-cents per TV show for a 48-hour rental period. Apple TV users may also be able to purchase TV shows for as little as $1.99 as they do now for download versions.
The iTunes update may enable renting of TV shows from Fox and ABC, as well as CBS and NBC if all four major broadcasters could come to financial terms with Apple.
UPDATED: The Apple conference confirmed the new Apple TV will sell for $99, and at a fourth of the size contain a built-in power supply, HDMI and ethernet ports, and Wi-Fi.
The hard drive will be much smaller because the new Apple TV will be geared towards renting rather than storing, and renting TV shows will cost .99 cents per episode.
Netflix will also be supported, as well as YouTube and Flickr access.