Apple’s iTunes Store has been the engine room of its portable devices right back to the days of the early iPods, where you could purchase music to load onto your shiny new music player and… that was pretty much all. The iPhone and iPad changed all that, though, as movies and TV shows were added to the store, making its name now a little misleading!
Obviously of the greatest benefit to those with Apple devices, iTunes is still perfectly usable for movie rental and purchase if you don’t own a single thing with the famous logo on it. You can still download the iTunes desktop software for free, set up an account and rent or buy movies and TV shows – you’ll just be restricted to watching them on your computer monitor.
The iTunes Store is accessible, of course, from all of Apple’s devices – iPhones, iPads and Apple TV. You can rent or buy movies – and buy, but not rent, TV series and individual episodes – but there is a small catch to watch out for if you’re renting. While purchased movies and shows can be played on any device signed into the same iTunes account, rented content can only be played on the device it was rented on. So for example, if you rent a movie on your iPhone, you can only play it back on that particular iPhone, not your Apple TV or desktop. If you rent content in iTunes on the desktop, however, you can play it on your Apple TV by using Home Sharing. Confusing, isn’t it? To be safe, just remember to rent on the platform you’ll be watching on.