Apple hopes to offer $1 TV downloads

Apple may be planning to offer downloaded TV shows for as little as 99 cents when its iPad launches in a few weeks’ time.

It’s long been focusing on content as a way of pushing device sales, and the plan would help test this theory. it’s believed to have been talking to a number of networks, some of which were initially less than enthusiastic. But while 99 cents might not seem like a lot, the networks are likely to feel that with DVD sales in sharp decline, a low price is better than none at all.

The company currently charges $1.99 for standard definition episodes, or $2.99 for high-definition. It’s already testing the waters by offering some shows for 99 cents, though, including Celebrity Paranormal Project and Children’s Hospital. Yum.

In an attempt to avoid annoying the networks too much, Apple is believed to be planning to restrict the deal to the standard-definition format, making it suitable for the iPad but not for a larger screen.

Apple has previously been in talks with television networks about a possible $30 monthly subscription plan, and the Financial Times  says it’s likely to go ahead with this alongside the new one-off pricing plan.