In the post Netflix Streaming world that we live in, every entertainment platform is scrambling to gain licensing rights to stream and broadcast exclusive TV and film content first.  And it now appears that the iTunes Replay system may be put on the back burner thanks to HBO.

According to SlashGear:

Reports that Apple will imminently offer re-downloads and streaming access to purchased movie and TV show content as part of an iTunes Replay system are premature, new sources have suggested, amid claims that in fact the Cupertino company is yet to secure most of the necessary licensing agreements. So far, deals with at least four of the six top film studios are yet to be inked, CNET‘s sources tell them, leaving an iTunes Replay launch several months off, in all probability.

And why aren’t those studios hopping onboard to get in bed with iTunes?  Three little letters: HBO.  There’s an industry term making the rounds today—‘HBO window.’  It’s a term that essentially refers to “the electronic distribution period in which HBO has exclusive rights to digital content from 20th Century Fox, Warner Bros. and Universal…during that period, while DVD sales are permitted, any electronic streaming distribution is not.”

HBO is reportedly not averse to cloud streaming delivery, at least where customers have already purchased copies of content and are re-accessing them as iTunes Replay supposedly allows, but the complexity of the licensing agreements – and the fast-moving pace of digital entertainment – means negotiations have been difficult. The company is supposedly cautious that pay-per-view streaming could evolve into subscription-based services, eating into its own profits.

Hard to blame HBO—after Blockbuster watched Netflix essentially destroy its company, HBO might not be chomping at the bit to hand over the reigns to a streaming system like iTunes replay.

What do you think of iTunes vs. HBO?