12 Replies Latest reply: Aug 30, 2011 6:12 PM by vazandrew
Luke Noel-Storr Level 1 (35 points)

I can't find any news of this happening, but all of a sudden I can find no TV show rentals on the Apple store.


What's up? Are the changing something? Has something gone wrong? or have they silently stopped doing TV show rentals?


I know you can now purchase shows on the Apple TV, and view your previous purchases, but I was a fan of TV rentals, ad was hoping they would expand, not abandon, the service.

  • hexonxonx Level 4 (2,455 points)

    Yes, for now, rentals are gone.

  • FelixGarcia Level 4 (2,810 points)

    Yep, they are gone, looks like for good. I also was a fan.

  • Luke Noel-Storr Level 1 (35 points)

    Is there any offical anounement, or any coverage of this in the tech blogs?


    I'm guessing there's people who bought the new Apple TV on the weight of TV rentals, and now they seem to have been silently dropped.


    I'm annoyed as I'm half way through renting a number of series, and am now stumped as to what to do.  I'll probbly end up aquiring them elsewhere.  I asume this is all down to the networks failing to co-operate, so their loss.

  • FelixGarcia Level 4 (2,810 points)

    Nothing offical that I can find, but they have updated thier AppleTV page:




    À la carte TV shows.

    With Apple TV, anytime is prime time. That’s because you can buy your favorite TV shows on the spot, uninterrupted. Buy a TV show for $1.99 or in HD for $2.99. When you buy an episode on Apple TV, you can download it again later to your iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, or computer. And it works the other way around. Buy an episode on any of your devices and it automatically shows up in your purchase history, so you can watch it on Apple TV. You can watch a show the day after it airs, or camp out on your couch and catch up on past seasons with a marathon of back-to-back episodes.

    Apple TV. Your personal TV-watching assistant.

    Say it’s midseason and you can’t make it home in time to watch this week’s episode of your favorite show. Apple TV keeps track of your favorite shows so the next time you turn on your TV, you can quickly see which season you’re watching and which episodes are new. Select shows with a few clicks of the included remote. And if your viewing list gets a bit long, Apple TV lets you rearrange it any way you want by clicking and reordering shows using the remote.

  • Mirko (Germany) Level 1 (0 points)

    Was told yesterday by the Apple iTunesStore Support that the shoe I asked about was not available for rent anymore. When I asked them back, what show they could name that I CAN rent I did not get an answer. That's truly poor customer care ... and I can't belive they will now force you to BUY the show. I was so excited when I was able to buy stuff on my ATV2 - but if I would have known that this will kill the rentals I would have strongly opposed that. Darned.

  • Mirko (Germany) Level 1 (0 points)

    Here is the original reply of the AppleSupport:


    Greetings from Apple iTunes Store Customer Support! I am XXXX.


    I understand that you would like to know if TV rentals are no longer available in iTunes Store. I will surely help you.


    Mirko, I would like to inform you that TV rentals are no longer offered on the iTunes Store and this applies for all the TV rentals. You can find many of your favorite TV episodes for purchase on the iTunes Store by visiting:




    If you paid for a TV rental on or before August 26, you have 30 days to watch the episode and 48 hours to finish viewing it from time you click Play.


    If you have further queries regarding this, please let me know and I will be happy to assist you.


    Thank you for contacting iTunes Store Support. Have a nice day!





    iTunes Store/Mac App Store Customer Support

  • Luke Noel-Storr Level 1 (35 points)

    I'm actually really annoyed about this, I had an original Apple TV, and the only reason I bought a new one was for TV rentals.  Aside from that I see no advantage in the new Apple TV, and the lack of storage means it is in some ways a step backwards from the older models.  OK, it also has AirPlay, but I am yet to have found a use for that.


    So, I've now wasted my money buying a new Apple TV.


    On top of that, I'm half way through renting three or four TV shows.  What do I do now?  Buy the remaining episodes, so that I own half of the series? buy the whole series, so there are some episodes I've then payed to rent and to purchase? It's just so frustrating.


    On top of that, there are several series that I have rented in their entirety, but have done so on the selling point of rentals that you could rent three times for less than the price of puchasing once.  These are shows that I will probably want to watch again, but probably not more than three times.  Now, if I want to watch them again, I'll have to purchase the shows, meaning my original payment for rentals (which adds up for a whole series) was another waste of money.


    So, yeah, I'm pretty annoyed at the money I've wasted buying my new Apple TV and paying for rentals which I'll now probably replace with purchases due to rentals being dropped.


    I think the very least Apple could do is refund the cost of a rental for any show a user subsequently purchases, due to their sudden U-turn which had no advanced warning.

  • John Gosselink Level 1 (20 points)

    I totally agree! I want to watch a TV show and be done with it. I DON'T want to watch it over and over again. Why the heck would I want to own it. I loved that it automatically disappeared when the rental was over so I didn't have to go back in and delete it.


    I can't believe that there wasn't sufficient interest. I DO believe that they just couldn't get the rights from the networks. I wish they would be honest about it instead of blaming lack of interest from us. Even if that was the case (and I don't think it is) what does it cost Apple to maintain the rental for those of us who want it?


    I actually dropped satellite because it was getting so expensive. Need to cut back somewhere and renting was much more economical. Now Apple just doubled my viewing cost. Then the networks wonder why people go out to get torrents of shows. Apple is making it worthwhile to buy music instead of pirating it, but they just did the opposite with TV. They just encouraged people to get pirated shows.

  • hexonxonx Level 4 (2,455 points)

    The decision has nothing to do with Apple:


    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/08/26/industry-us-apple-tv-rental-idUSTRE77P 75920110826


    Read the article and you will see it was the networks. Basically they say that owning represents a better value to consumers then renting. It was the networks desision to pull rentals calling it an experiment that lasted longer than they intended.

  • wr_ Level 1 (10 points)

    I don't think that we will ever get the real scoop on this, but it does demonstrate a rather unstable environment for apple and its entertainment genre.  Perhaps it also brings to question a more serious assumption here. Can one  rely upon "cloud" services when clouds just float away at the whim of corportate decisions?  It may be true that VHS is outdated, but they still work.  If one owned Sony Beta, at least the tapes didn't self-destruct.  Investing in products like AppleTv that become cloud dependent, may in the long run be a misplaced assumption about stability.


    I also understand that "owning" a file keeps some additional control over viewing, but it is not the object that is in question here (the mp3 file) but the ability to continue to view it in the same fashion (rental) as was once offered through itunes and apple tv.  Now that that ability as "floated away" in the clouds, one should wonder what other services may be dropped.  It gives a sort of unstalbe feel to the whole thing. 

  • vazandrew Level 6 (17,500 points)

    All I can say is that we never had rentals at all, since it was a US only service. Personally if the networks weren't so greedy it could have had potential. So it wasn't a stable environment to begin with. The movie rentals are established and the other cloud features should be fine. Music licensing is much easier compared to Film and TV.