NBC Universal will make content available on Apple's video iPod—as well as computers—via Apple's online iTunes service as part of a deal for 300 episodes of 16 old and new series.
New programming from prime time, cable and late night includes Law & Order, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, Surface, Conan O'Brien, The Office and Monk. They join library product including Adam-12, Knight Rider and Dragnet.
Current shows will be available the day after they air in NBC U-branded (NBC, USA and Sci Fi) areas of iTunes. The episodes of Adam-12 and Law & Order will go for the same price: $1.99 apiece.
NBC U Chairman Bob Wright told B&C in an interview in October that the iPod's security system was what made it an attractive venue for content. He has been one of the leading voices for protecting TV content in the digital space, arguing that, without that protection, content providers won't be eager to provide the programming.
When asked about ABC's willingness to allow iPod disribution of franchise show Desperate Housewives, he said: "Those [episodes] are all going to be watermarked. Those aren't going to go anywhere. They are basically designed to be used with the iPod or your computer. They have limited transportability, which is one of the advantages that the iPod system has."
He echoed that sentiment Tuesday, saying in a statement: "Apple has developed a distribution platform that is attractive to consumers while at the same time providing the safeguards against theft that are so important to us and to every content provider. We are pleased to partner with them in this new venture."