Video for the Masses

Apple has finished its big event. The news? New smaller iMacs with built-in cameras and a bundled remote control to go with new photo creation software. And the new standard iPod. It is thinner. It has a 2.5-inch screen. And, as speculated, it can play video. ITunes 6.0 will let you buy music videos for $1.99 each. ABC is also partnering with Apple to sell episodes of television shows, like the hits Lost and Desperate Housewives, at the same $1.99. The iPod has a video out, so you should be able to watch the shows elsewhere too.

While the quality of the video likely isn’t amazing given the 320×240 resolution of the iPod screen, it may be the beginning of a big change: legally downloadable television shows, the day after broadcast. With 200 million copies of iTunes out there, there is a huge potential audience. Watch the news on your subway trip to work; download shows that you miss due to meetings–many will find uses for the video feature.

Will this new iPod continue Apple’s string of successes? Will other Hollywood studios follow and sell their shows online? It remains to be seen.