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NBC Universal resists Apple's 99c TV plan, champions Samsung Tab…

Apple’s attempt at 99-cent TV show rentals is off to a choppy start, with NBC Universal chief exec Jeff Zucker saying his network ain’t about to follow Fox and Walt Disney to rent movies via the service.

Zucker argues that renting shows at these prices would undermine the value of the shows, “We do not think 99 cents is the right price point for our content. … We thought it would devalue our content,” Zucker said at a Goldman Sachs investor conference, as reported by Reuters.

At present, only shows from Fox and Walt Disney are available for 99-cents rental via iTunes and the Apple TV. However, Fox owner News Corp.’s president warned that that company’s deal with Apple can be characterized as a “short-term test”.

NBC Universal do offer shows for sale at $1.99 via iTunes.

What could be interesting about the decision is that NBC Universal is currently merging with Comcast’s entertainment unit in a new joint venture. Another remarkable thing is that Google has reached a multi-year deal with NBC Universal to represent inventory on a number of NBC cable stations.

“In addition to selling ads on Syfy, Oxygen, MSNBC, CNBC and other networks, Google will work with NBCU to develop new ad metrics and conduct research based on viewership data supplied by set top boxes.”

In another intriguing step, NBC executive Michael Schreiber was on stage during the Android-powered Samsung Galaxy Tab launch to declare that “the best platform” and so on.

That’s because:

the Galaxy Tab will include future access to Media Hub, Samsung’s own content service, offering a vast lineup of critically acclaimed films and TV programs for rent or purchase. Samsung is working with the biggest and best names in entertainment, including MTV Networks, NBC Universal and Paramount to assemble a robust library of movies and TV programming, including new release films, next day TV episodes and even full TV show seasons. Media Hub also allows the user to expand the entertainment experience, allowing content purchased to permanently own to be shared with up to five devices that carry the Media Hub application.” [from Press Release].

I’ll say no more other than mention how intriguing this seems. How intriguing do you think it is, oh reader?

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