eyes film, TV service

E-tailer plans Web subscriptions for catalogue content is working on an online subscription service for TV shows and movies.

The Web retailer has pitched the idea to major media companies, in recent weeks, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

The new initiative comes as various tech players, from Netflix to Google and Apple, are looking to position themselves as entertainment hubs in competition to cable and satellite TV providers.

Apple Inc. is expected to unveil later in the day Wednesday a 99 cents rental service for TV shows with partners News Corp./Fox and Walt Disney/ABC.

Amazon appears to be targeting "a similar model to Netflix, focusing on older, "catalogue" content," the Journal reported, citing people briefed on the matter. Media executives at media companies often view older content on the Web as less of a threat to existing business models.

Amazon currently already sells individual episodes of TV shows often for $1.99 each and sells and rents digital movie downloads.