In an effort to increase iTunes video sales, Apple is reportedly in discussions with US television networks to cut the price of shows in half.

Citing three people familiar with the proposal, Variety is claiming that Apple has told networks and studios that it would like to slash the cost of most TV episodes from the current $1.99 (98p) to just $0.99 (50p). By way of comparison, TV downloads from the UK iTunes Store cost £1.89 per episode (or $3.82).

According to reports, Apple believes the move could double video sales and offset the loss in per-video downloads.

So far networks have been loath to agree to such a move. But some are speculating that this request could have partially been behind last week's announcement by NBC that it will not renew its iTunes distribution deal.

Apple declined to comment on the report.