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Best Buy Rolls Out 4K UHD Blu-ray Movies, Player Early

22 Feb, 2016 By: Erik Gruenwedel

The official launch date for 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc movies is March 1, but Best Buy has already begun selling some titles and a related Samsung UHD Blu-ray player in select stores.

Titles from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, including Oscar-nominated The Martian, Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, Hitman: Agent 47 and Fantastic Four, among others, were spotted at a Best Buy store in Manhattan, N.Y., priced at $28 — $2 off the suggested retail price.

Research firm IHS Technology says annual worldwide shipments of Ultra HD TVs are expected to grow by nearly 719% over the next several years, from nearly 12 million in 2014 to nearly 96 million in 2019, with more than 300 million in use by the end of 2019.

The consumer electronics retailer is selling Samsung’s UBD-K8500 wireless Blu-ray player for $400 ahead of the device’s reported April 5 street date. Interestingly, the player is sold out online at Best Buy’s website, but is available in some Best Buy stores, including the Atlanta Edgewood location, according to a store clerk.

The player is also available for pre-order on Amazon and Walmart.com, among other e-commerce sites.

Lionsgate announced it would make available on March 1 in 4K UHD Blu-ray Ender’s Game, Sicario, The Expendables 3 and The Last Witch Hunter priced at $29.99 each.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is launching The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Salt, Hancock, Chappie, Pineapple Express and The Smurfs 2. The studio is also making available in digital 4K — via Dish Network’s Hopper 3 and 4K Joey DVRs — the following titles: The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Captain Phillips, American Hustle, Monuments Men and The Smurfs 2.

Warner Bros. has made select 4K digital titles available on Walmart’s Vudu.com, including Oscar-nominated Mad Max: Fury Road and San Andreas. The studio, along with Universal Pictures Home Entertainment, The Orchard, Shout! Factory and Mance Media, is also releasing 4K discs March 1.

Best Buy reports fourth-quarter financials Feb. 25.

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