Mass-media mess-up: NBC doesn’t get the iTunes store

ondrasoukupTUAW takes a look at how NBC doesn’t realize just how good they’ve got it, or rather had it, with the iTunes store…[…] Thanks to ondrasoukup for providing this nice story on Digg.

What other users say about this:

DevlinD: So…what exactly is NBC gaining out of selling their content through Amazon?? I just don’t see it, sure the pricing may be higher (haven’t verified this yet) and the DRM is tighter…how does this translate into higher revenue? Revenue comes from sales, iTunes has the sales and the user base, Amazon might as well have nothing compared to that.

Doesn’t NBC remember that the iPod was pretty much ubiquitous even before video content became available? What is NBC supposed to do when the previous purchasers of their content (through iTunes) no longer have a portable device to put their media on? The selling point of content on the iPod is that it is mobile, so now NBC has to find another device on which it can make its media portable, and then hope that said device is a real iPod killer, or else they would actually make less money than they are now with iTunes.

I dunno…Apple owns the portable media market, what’s the use in crying about it. MS was the only legitimate contender that could provide the full offering in a similar manner to the iPod/iTunes and they completely sunk that ship with the failure of the Zune. As much as the media companies hate it, they don’t have the pull in this arena that they do with their bread and butter strengths.

Google, YouTube, Facebook, iTunes…all these services have one thing in common…they create nothing original but provide a user friendly one stop shop so that you can find what you are looking for. iTunes is an exception here because they do in fact provide something original, the iPod. NBC walking away isn’t going to make the iPod any less popular, its just going to drive users to “illegal” means to put the content on their iPod.

Stupid incumbent old ass companies…when will you learn.

VitriolAndAngst: As I posted before… wait until todays announcements.

From the Steve-note today;
“We started with just 200k songs, but we have over 6m songs in every single one of those stores. Millions ahead of anyone else. We’ve become the number 3 music retailer in the US — behind Wal-Mart and Best Buy, ahead of Amazon and Target.” Over 550 shows, sold over 95m shows, 125k podcasts. “This is amazing material, it’s free, and over 25k are video podcasts.”
“This last statistic blew my mind: in the US of all the music releases in 2006, 32% were digital-only releases. They weren’t released on a CD. Live concerts, independents. Look how far we’ve come. A THIRD of the music released in this country was digital only.”

>> I have to admit that I have Apple Stock. But I didn’t sell at $150, because I think that we will see these numbers in video very shortly.

And to disagree with Engaget — I think the StarBucks announcement is a bit more significant than they do. StarBucks is everywhere. If a person has wi-fi at home (and if they are the consumer who plunks down $350 on a personal music player — they do), and wi-fi at work. The pause inbetween where they can also do everything on the iPod touch is at a StarBucks. There isn’t much need for 3G if most places where you would stop have wi-fi. The icon to use StarBucks appears dynamically when you get to the StarBucks — take note of the dollar signs that brings up to advertisers. Think of the integration of getting the song that StarBucks is playing. Forget that you might not care about their coffee or their music. Think Movie Theaters — do you want to download and keep this movie you just watched? Click here. Impulse buys. You go on the plane, and instead of that crappy headset; “Do you want to watch one of the following shows?” This is media placement and it can be branded by every brick and mortar that want’s access to (at a rough estimate) 200 million iPod users (taking the 600,000 ipods and dividing by 3 because some people have destroyed their ipod or have more than one).

The 8Gig iPhone is going to be $400 bucks.

Again. Casual video viewing will be on the iPod in the very near future. People have less time at home to watch TV. More time with the iPod. Content is shifting and NBC is going to go back to Apple and TRY to re-sign for next year.

I guarantee it.

slider121: “iTunes Store’s raison d’etre “[The iTunes Store] is designed to drive sales of Apple devices at the expense of those who create the content that make these devices worth buying.”

If there was no DRM, then I could play the file on a Zune, Creative player, or and other portable player, not to mention Linux. NBC gave Apple the market share by forcing DRM. Now by going to unbox there forcing iPod owners to seek other means to obtain the shows. I for one just capture the series on my mythbox from the HD feed and convert it myself, but most users will hit bit-toorent and NBC gets $0 from it. This is just stupid on NBC’s part.

— can you tell I HATE DRM!!!

bingobongony: unbiased article from a website that masturbates to images of Steve Jobs nightly.

VitriolAndAngst: Here, Now I’ve spent 5 minutes with this topic and I’m already smarter than the execs at NBC. Look at these two posts on the website and note the problem with NBC’s decision;

8. The real stupidity of NBC’s move is that they’ve cut themselves off from the actual devices that play the content. Amazon’s Unbox doesn’t play on iPods — and they represent 85% or more of the portable video playing devices out there. The remaining devices that play video don’t all support Amazon’s format either. Good luck selling to the 5% of the portable market that’s left.

and this;
I just read an article on ars technica ( regarding the new deal NBC just made with Amazon’s Unbox. Get this: no mixing of accounts; only one account per PC (it’s Windows only); that’s the tougher DRM these jerks wanted!

Contract ends in December. No word that I’ve seen if the contract with iTunes was exclusive. It doesn’t seem that Apple forces that on many companies — but I wouldn’t know.

ArthurSucks: A lot of people are saying “itunes sucks” and “apple sucks” yadda yadda…
As far as I know apple’s itunes store is the ONLY legal place to buy shows. What legal option is better?

writeman: NBC made the right move. They really have nothing to lose at this point. Yes, a lot of people download NBC shows and want to pay a reasonable price, but that’s practically FOUND money for NBC — they make their money in on-air advertising — so they can afford to gamble a little by telling iTunes to screw.

MattH: The networks and Movie studios don’t want to fall into the same trap the Record labels did and fall into the monopoly that is iTunes .

The networks are getting smart and dividing online content distribution amongst a number of distributors who they trust will protect their copyright online and will pay for the bandwidth so no one distributor can fully dominate the market like iTunes has .

Amazon Unbox also sells directly into TIVO so this puts a huge dent into the market for Apple TV .

geekee: iTunes sucks. I don’t want an iPod and I don’t want to deal with a company that refuses to support any other portable media player.

reed311: Ok, you guys have run this story into the ground. Just keep downloading your torrents and pretend that you were actually paying for those shows to begin with and that the small amount of revenue NBC was getting from iTunes is actually going to hurt them.

Stormwave0: I’m pretty sure NBC made the decision knowing all the consequences. After all, they are a multibillion dollar organization. They’re not stupid – despite what all these crazy commentators are making the company out to be.

Switch to capturing with programs like EyeTV? Try explaining that to your average iTunes purchaser and they’ll look back at you and blink. iTunes is simple, capturing shows and removing commercials manually is not.

Vtorch: Do people actually have to digg a Apple Blog and use it as a credible source? People, it’s just a blog.

NBC makes more money from advertising rather than selling small sized video to play on an iPod. Plus, iTunes content doesn’t even do HD yet. PLUS, you can watch their shows online. Why would anyone (who is not an die hard Apple fanboy) want to spend x amount of dollars to download lower quality content when they can buy the season DVD?

You people think like children or naive college students.

archer75: Fuck itunes. You are all suckers for buying low res DRM shows anyways.

my8bird: I hate itunes. Use rockbox and doppler. Don’t pay for cable and then turn around and buy the same program. Get tivo, mythtv or something like them and get the season for only the price of the system.

VitriolAndAngst: NBC was making 33,000% more off the Web sales then they are the without the web sales.

Of course, this could be larger — what is a few million times Zero?

The idiocy of these people is astounding — nobody is buying re-runs when they are free on TV. The convenience of buying them off the web is for people who missed the show or can’t get the show.

If you has like Business 101 skills — you would set up the NEW outlet BEFORE burning the f’ing bridge. I’m not bothered that they’ve taken their few great shows off of iTunes — I’m bothered that they thought their content was going to wag-the-dog and they wanted to charge DVD prices for TV shows, and then they fricken’ ruin the deal like some idiots before they secured the new outlet.

Whether or not you thought you could get more per show (you can’t, but let’s not keep them from a learning experience), you don’t use the business model of ” Ready, Fire, Aim” you don’t CLOSE a way to sell something BEFORE finding the new way.

If I were Amazon, I’d be raising the price right now. I’m guessing a few consultants are going to lose some jobs (for cover, if nothing else) and then they are going to start whining to Apple to take them back. Then try a really stupid move like suing Apple because they had a contract. Without looking at their contract, I’m sure that NBC probably broke it.

This is like Bush-stupid.

Can you get any dumber? Can I get a job as a suite as a CEO of NBC and just tell them; “That’s really dumb — don’t do it. Now where is my golden parachute?”


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