Best Buy Offers Streaming Movies with CinemaNow

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There's a new streaming video service in town. Is Netflix worried? Probably not.

Starting today, Best Buy has its own streaming entertainment service, thanks to a previously announced partnership with Sonic Solutions. Best Buy now owns the rights to the CinemaNow trademark and will use it to market its own instant-view movie and TV service. Sonic will power the streaming delivery.

CinemaNow will be available through connected Blu-ray Disc players and HDTVS, as well as on the web at CinemaNow.com. All new Blu-ray and home theater systems from LG Electronics will offer access to the service starting later this month.

The service will offer a la carte movie and TV purchases, with no subscriptions required. Rentals will cost about $5 and purchases around $15, which is in line with competing services. CinemaNow will have an advantage in that it will offer studio releases at the same time as those titles are released on Blu-ray Discs or DVDs.

Best Buy is already looking ahead to its firsts major update to the service, which will come later this year. The update will deliver an advanced user interface and expanded playback features.

CinemaNow has been around since 1999, but has never developed much of an audience despite having a large library of major studio content. It was acquired by Sonic Solutions in November 2008.

"The convenience, selection, and flexibility of the CinemaNow service offers customers more freedom in the way they choose to consume entertainment from Best Buy. This service, which complements our existing suite of digital entertainment brands, will be available to customers in their homes and on-the-go through a broad array of devices and will be brought to life in store with the help of our Blue Shirts and Geek Squad Agents," says Chris Homeister, senior vice president of entertainment for Best Buy.

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