How Apple could deliver workable iTunes video rentals

“Apple is reportedly considering an expansion of its iTunes offerings to include video rentals. How can Apple succeed in a market where so many other online media outlets have failed or are struggling for relevance? By taking an new approach that follows what works in the real world, and respects the existing culture rather than trying to overturn it,” Daniel Eran Dilger writes for RoughlyDrafted.

“Rather than renting one-use access to media rentals that are timed to explode, it seems more likely that Apple will deliver a slot-based media offering, where users could buy a certain number of slots on a subscription basis. When finished with a movie, the user returns it to the slot and can replace it with another download. This would copy how Blockbuster and Netflix run their DVD rentals, within the virtual realm,” Dilger writes.

“The difference for consumers is that they would decide when they are done with a title, rather than it expiring or limited them to one play on one device, as is the case for Microsoft’s Windows Media rentals for the Xbox 360 Live service. It would also be possible to sync iTunes’ slots to mobile devices, as iTunes already manages their library sync. Those devices would “loan out” the item in slots, and return them to get new items,” Dilger writes.

Dilger takes a look at what’s involved in the complex world of digital rentals and how Apple could deliver workable iTunes rentals in his full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Billy” for the heads up.]


  1. @mm:

    My bad, I though Daniel Dilger was proposing a plan that actually could have been implemented. It clear to me now that current technology is incapable of providing realtime online film rental services.

    I mean, how many minutes would most people be willing to wait to download a 2 hour film? I wouldn’t want to wait more than 2 minutes and I doubt that sufficient and affordable bandwidth will be available for several years.

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