Apple is reportedly in talks with Hollywood studios for earlier access to movies in order to bolster its iTunes business.
According to Bloomberg, 21st Century Fox Inc., Warner Bros. and Universal Pictures all confirmed over the past week that they are looking to offer high-priced, home-video rentals of new movies shortly after they open in theaters. Some studio executives have been pushing to allow home rentals as early as two weeks after theatrical debuts and are considering a deal with iTunes as one option, Bllomerg;s sources addded.
Getting new movies sooner would help iTunes stand out in a crowded online market for movies, TV shows and music.
Hollywood studios typically give theaters exclusive rights to new movies for 90 days or more before issuing them on DVD or making them available for online purchase.
But while Apple encrypts iTunes video files so they can't easily be duplicated, it's possible to use a camera to record a movie playing on a TV screen. A leak of picture that's still in theaters would jeopardize returns for the studios and cinema owners.