Apple has pulled the plug on TV episode rentals via iTunes, abruptly leaving customers with only the option of purchasing per episode -- good thing you can watch those on your Apple TV streamed from the cloud -- or a Season Pass where available. AllThingsD has a quote from spokesman Tom Neumayr indicating this was in response to customers that "overwhelmingly prefer buying TV shows." Making the timing of the move particularly curious are once-again renewed rumors of an Apple HDTV and a WSJ profile of new CEO Tim Cook that indicates the company is "working on new technology to deliver video to televisions, and has been discussing whether to try to launch a subscription TV service." Like Google, any move depends on its success in negotiating a new delivery model from the networks, who so far have been averse to anything that threatens their existing relationship with pay-TV providers. It appears 99-cent rentals didn't move the needle, so we'll wait and see what the folks from Cupertino have up their sleeve next.