iTunes sells The Daily Show

Apple has signed a contract with Comedy Central to sell a whole month's worth of The Daily Show (16 episodes) for $9.99. That works out to sixty-two cents per show. That's not a bad price, but I think that long term, we need to see the cost per half hour go below ten cents for things that you are not likely to watch more than once.

But things are headed in the right direction. This allows you to cut the tether to the television completely if there are only a few shows you care about. With cable TV bills running close to $40/month, if you are selective about what you watch (of course, not everyone is), you can buy a lot of TV at about $1 per hour.

Not coincidentally, as I predicted long ago, Tivo is having problems. Everyone and their brother are rolling out digital video recorder (DVR) boxes, with the cable companies putting real pressure on the firm, but the ability to just download what you want to watch and store it on your computer completely negates the need for a DVR at all. And the high initial price plus the monthly subscription will buy you a lot of TV at the iTunes store.

The DVR market is dead. A wide variety of excellent open source (free) and commercial DVR software programs that run on your home computer will be available within a year, they won't cost anything to use, and it won't send all your viewing choices back to the company where they sell them to advertisers building massive dossiers on your life. There are already lots of choices, and the DVR software market is growing daily. Tivo is dead, dead, dead.

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