With Macworld starting up on Tuesday, there are lots of rumors going around about what Apple plans to introduce. Lots of blogs predict a sub-compact notebook, with USA Today reporting that it may be 50% thinner than existing MacBooks. The announcement I'm looking forward to the most however, is movie downloads. Movie rentals are expected to be announced on Tuesday, but I'm more interested in what Apple plans to do with their Apple TV set-top box and what extra may be had in the iTunes Store.
The battle between Blu-ray and HD-DVD is seemingly at an end. But, I think that we're going to be downloading movies quicker than we think, making Blu-ray not really all that exciting. That's why I'm looking forward to what Apple might have in store. I'm hoping that they'll introduce HD content into the iTunes Store. That would finally make movies on iTunes exciting to me.
One problem remains though: DRM. The music companies have just now figured out that DRM on music is bad for business. But, the movie companies haven't learned that yet. If you bought the latest movie release on iTunes, you'd have to plunk down $9.99 to $12.99. And then you could only play it on an Apple approved device: like an iPod, iPhone, Apple TV, or iTunes itself.
I don't think that movie downloads are really going to take off until DRM is removed. It's just too risky to spend $10 bucks per movie and be looked into a device that you can't control. Until the studios realize that though, they'll probably just fracture the market with many different DRM schemes and end up confusing the consumer. Just like they did with HD-DVD vs Blu-ray.