Monday, January 21, 2008
NBC To Return To iTunes?
Well, if reports coming from several different sources are correct, then the spate between Apple and NBC may very well be soon over. It seems that NBC is willing to kiss and make up after their well publicized rift with the iconic computer, iPod and iPhone maker.
According to Jeff Zucker, Universal's chief, "We’ve said all along that we admire Apple, that we want to be in business with Apple."
This of course is quite remarkable considering that Zucker had not that long ago previously accused Apple of refusing to even experiment with flexible pricing.
Zucker also added, "We're great fans of Steve Jobs."
Some people, myself included, have speculated that Universal's participation in Apple's iTune's movie rentals signaled a softening in position from Universal/NBC. If this is true, then it bodes well for Apple's iTunes, which I personally think was the most important announcement to come out of the recent Macworld.
Yes, I agree that the MacBook Air was sexier, and a little more exciting, but as far as having a lasting and positive impact on Apple and iTunes, it is the strengthening of the iTunes and Apple TV that will go a long way in growing Apple as a company.
Soon, if all goes to plan, most people will be renting their movies from Apple from the comfort of their homes. Netflex and the others are going to be hard press to compete with Apple. This of course will bring a lot of scrutiny by the government and Apple's competitors, but I think Apple will do fine.
Apple already is the largest provider of legally downloaded music, a business that Apple had virtually invented, so its only natural that Apple would bring movies into the mix. In the future, a lot of people are going to be looking at Apple more as an entertainment company than a manufacturer of computers, iPods and iPhones! Apple's name will be up there among the giants of Hollywood, an equal with Universal, Paramount, etc. Hell, it kicked started, (well, at least Jobs did) the whole computer generated animated movie craze with Pixar, so Apple and Jobs deserve to take their place among greats such as Cecil B. Demille, etc.
Hopefully, all of the reports of such a return of NBC to the iTune's catalog will come about, and come about soon. I think it would not only be good for Apple and iTunes, but I think it would be even a better for NBC and Universal. Some thought that Universal would never agree to Apple's movie rental, but hey.... its now history!
Soon after NBC left iTunes, Apple's CEO and spiritual leader, Steve Jobs said, "We hope they'll reconsider their decisions over time and maybe find out that iTunes and iPods are a great way to digitally distribute their content to tens or maybe hundreds of millions of customers around the world."
I, like millions of others, am echoing that sentiment, and it looks, by all accounts, that is just what might be happening? We don't know for sure, but if I had to bet on it, I think that my money would be safe. Let's all hope so anyway?
Inconclusion: Don't underestimate Steve Jobs. To do so, is to do so at your own risk.
And thats my 2 cents 4 this Monday, January 21, 2008.