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Best Buy Ups CinemaNow Profile

8 Dec, 2010 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Best Buy Co. is putting its CinemaNow digital service on a pedestal in stores, literally.

The Minneapolis-based consumer electronics retailer this week bowed standalone kiosks in select stores showcasing digital distribution of movies, music and TV shows from the Internet via connected devices.

Notably featured on kiosks (located in the DVD/Blu-ray section of stores) was a wireless Insignia Blu-ray Disc player (NS-WBRDVD2) specially priced at $99 following a discount. Higher-priced models include a Netflix streaming app.

In addition, Best Buy is selling a wireless Sony Blu-ray player (BDPS470) with 3D playback functionality (firmware upgrade required) and Netflix, Pandora music and YouTube apps at $149.99.

Through the holidays, CE devices with CinemaNow embedded include a $20 gift card for CinemaNow purchases.

In this week’s newspaper circular, Best Buy posted an instructional how-to diagram outlining to consumers details about CinemaNow and the types of devices it can interact with.

A store rep in Irvine, Calif., explained the CinemaNow displays are designed to help consumers understand how connected devices work and how entertainment can be acquired from the Internet.

“We tell people to think of it like using Netflix, except you get to keep what you actually buy,” the rep said.

Ralph Schackart, analyst with William Blair & Co. in Chicago, said the circular not only informs consumers, it educates store personnel.

“Store associates use the circular to educate themselves on current trends, what products the company values and what products to focus on for sales that week,” Schackart wrote in a note.

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