Download your episode of “Lost” or “Desperate Housewives” (from Yahoo!)

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – ABC’s unprecedented plan to offer next-day downloads of its biggest prime-time hits for $1.99 per episode TO Apple’s new video playing iPod opens a new revenue stream for the TV industry and a new era of digital portability for viewers, experts said on Wednesday.

The move, unveiled in conjunction with a new partnership between the Walt Disney Co. and Apple Computer Inc marks the latest bid by a major broadcast network and its parent company to shake up “old media” models and expand their avenues of distribution.

I wonder how hard it would be to set up a chatroom showing episodes? Save me seat if you work out a way, oh and don’t hog the popcorn! Did I miss anything, what just happened, is it time for a loo break?

The downloads will be priced at $1.99 per episode, the same as iTunes will charge for music videos.

How much is a boxset these days anyway?

“Disney has always taken the attitude that they want to be able to distribute their content to anyone, any time … no matter how they want to consume it,” he told Reuters. Mike McGuire, research director for the Gartner Group, said the downloads present “another way to extract revenue” from Disney properties without cannibalizing commercial potential for DVD sales and reruns.
The availability of cheap downloads of single episodes could help drive demand for DVD boxed sets, giving more consumers a chance to sample a show before deciding whether they want to pay for an entire season.

And he said audiences that seek out their entertainment on the Internet differ from the more “passive” viewers who settle for traditional reruns

The next bit was super-duper interesting…

Offering downloads of shows stripped of ads, however, might give advertisers the jitters, he added.

…but not surprising – the advertising industry missed the boat during the CD and video then the DVD revolution. They have zero knowledge of advertising into online RP games and iTunes have ’em stumped *sniggers* will there be an advertising industry in the future? There are some interesting agencies and companies playing in this space but not many…