Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes says Apple's 99-cent rental model threatens sales

Laura June Dziuban
L. Dziuban|09.30.10

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Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes says Apple's 99-cent rental model threatens sales
Well, this isn't going to be surprising to many, but certain executives of certain big studios and networks aren't wasting anytime letting everybody know what they think of Apple's new 99-cent rental model for the Apple TV. If you've read our review of the tiny new iOS device, you're already aware that one of Apple's biggest challenges with the product is getting the content providers on board for such a reduced price -- so far, the company's managed to pull in ABC, Disney, Fox, and the BBC -- but Jobs has said that studios will quickly "see the light" and join up. Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes seems to disagree, however. "How can you justify renting your first-run TV shows individually for 99 cents an episode and thereby jeopardize the sale of the same shows as a series to branded networks that pay hundreds of millions of dollars and make those shows available to loyal viewers for free?" Bewkes recently asked, joining the now growing chorus of executives to decry the new scheme. Jeff Zucker recently said he thought Apple's 99-cent rentals "devalue" the content, while Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman said the rental model was "not good."
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