According to Bloomberg, Apple is in talks with major movie studios to offer early rentals on iTunes. The report, which cites sources familiar with the ongoing discussions, suggests 21st Century Fox, Universal Pictures and Warner Bros., are trying to find a partner to help them rent films “as early as two weeks” after they first hit theaters. That said, Bloomberg does note that the Hollywood overlords may “end up choosing another technology platform” instead of iTunes, although no specifics were given.
If such a deal were to take place, chances are viewers at home would have to pay a premium for this type of service, since it would take some revenue away from the box office. For now, all we know is that the studios allegedly want these rentals to be “high-priced,” so you should definitely expect to pay more than the usual $5 or $6.
Sean Parker, Napster founder and tech entrepreneur, is trying to do something similar with “The Screening Room,” which aims to rent movies the same day they come out in theaters for $50 per view. Most importantly, he claims his service offers a secure anti-piracy technology, something that’s very important to the movie companies.
Even at that price, you’d probably still end up saving a bit of cash by skipping the trip to your local movie theater — time to start stocking up on popcorn and hot dogs.