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CinemaNow Redesigns Web Site, Adds Features

19 Jul, 2005 By: Holly J. Wagner

CinemaNow has overhauled its Web site with a look that's more like online DVD rental services — except for the "no waiting for DVDs in the mail" selling point.

The site has also begun offering tips for users to watch content on their TVs as well as other new features, such as search engine recommendations that mimic the features online rentailers offer.

The service offers more than 4,000 feature-length films, concerts and television programs from more than 250 licensors, but while that's a substantial library for downloading, it still pales beside the 40,000 or 45,000 titles that Blockbuster Online and Netflix, respectively, offer.

What the site does offer is immediacy. Viewers can stream or download content and begin watching as soon as 30 seconds into the download.

The site has a new option that lets the customer choose the format (multiple encode rates, high definition) and playback options (portable video players, mobile devices); a dedicated area offers content for portable media devices; and the redesigned site also has a page of detailed instructions for linking the computer or media center PC to the TV for more comfortable viewing.

The redesigned site includes user ratings and reviews, and lets users e-mail title pages to friends. The site recently began offering high-def movies, so far limited to Imax titles.

“For the last six years, CinemaNow has been at the forefront of digital video delivery. We have applied our knowledge of the market to create a new site focused on the two things our customers have told us they most value: choice and convenience,” said Curt Marvis, CEO of CinemaNow. “We are the only broadband video store to provide such a large library, three payment options, upgraded video encoding and a growing number of options for playing our content on TVs and portable devices. The time was right to enhance the site to better service the changing landscape of digital delivery.”

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