Apple expects sales of its redesigned, diskless set-top box to surpass 1 million this week, and the company claims users are renting and purchasing more than 400,000 TV episodes and 150,000 movies from iTunes per day.
The computer giant began shipping the new Apple TV, priced at $99, in late September after disappointing sales of its first-generation box.
With the launch of the slimmer set-top, Apple struck deals to offer 99-cent, 24-hour rentals of TV shows from ABC, ABC Family, Fox, Disney Channel and BBC America. The company did not break out how many of the 400,000 episodes are rentals versus download-to-own; the rentals may be viewed on computers and other Apple devices besides the set-top.
The iTunes Store also offers many episodes of TV shows for purchase, typically priced at $1.99 each. In addition, Apple TV provides access to Internet services including Netflix, YouTube and Flickr.
Apple TV recently added a feature called AirPlay that lets users wirelessly stream their music, video and photos from iPad, iPhone and iPod touch to the set-top. The Apple devices also can function as a remote control.
Last year Apple attempted to acquire content for a monthly subscription plan for popular TV shows -- floating a $30 per month price point -- but reportedly faced resistance to that idea from programmers.
The new Apple TV, roughly 4 inches square, is about one-fourth the size of the previous generation of Apple TVs, which carried a list price most recently of $229. Originally the Apple TV was priced at $299.