NBCU Buries Hatchet With Apple


Apple and NBC Universal have settled their differences over the pricing of digital downloads of the programmer's TV shows and movies, with Apple's iTunes set to offer HD versions at the premium price NBC was looking for.

The companies announced Tuesday that NBC programming would again be available on the iTunes Store, including series from NBC, USA Network, Sci Fi Channel, Bravo, Sleuth and NBC News.

Last year, NBCU CEO Jeff Zucker said he decided to pull NBC content off iTunes when Apple CEO Steve Jobs refused to test a single show at the rate of $2.99 an episode.

The parties have reached a compromise: iTunes will sell NBCU shows in standard-definition at $1.99 per episode, while HD-format versions will go for $2.99. Library titles will sell for 99 cents. 

HD titles on iTunes are encoded in 720p format, which provides 1280-by-720 screen resolution and at least 24 frames per second.

Zucker, in announcing the deal, said that “now, by offering consumers a variety of new options, our fans have even more ways to enjoy our content.”

NBCU shows available include Heroes, The Office, Battlestar Galactica and 30 Rock. The companies said additional NBCU programming from Oxygen, Telemundo, Mun2 and NBC Sports will be available on iTunes soon.

“We are thrilled that NBC is back on iTunes in time for the fall TV season,” Jobs said in a statement. “NBC has some of TV's most popular shows and now customers can purchase and download them from iTunes in SD or stunning HD.”