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Best Buy to launch branded movie download service

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Minneapolis Best Buy Co. said Tuesday that it will launch its own movie download service for consumer electronics sold in its stores.

The retailer said it will soon roll out a movie download service in partnership with Roxio CinemaNow.

The new service, as yet unnamed, will be up and running sometime in the fourth quarter, according to Best Buy.

The retailer is licensing the software and infrastructure from Sonic Solutions' Roxio CinemaNow service, which has more than 20,000 film titles, mostly new releases, available via its on-demand service.

The software will be available on Best Buy's Insignia brand of TVs and Blu-ray players, but the retailer is talking to other, bigger name consumer electronics makers about also including the service on its devices.

"We want to make sure it's difficult to walk out of a Best Buy store without a device that has our movie technology embedded on it," said Ryan Pirozzi, director of digital video for Best Buy.

CinemaNow content is already available on a variety of devices, and is capable of playback on Mac, PC, and Android platforms, including Hewlett-Packard and Dell laptops as well as LG Blu-ray players. But Best Buy wants more so that it can sell the idea that when you rent or buy a movie through this service, you'd be able to transfer the content to any other device you buy in the store.

It's part of Best Buy's strategy to not just sell hardware to customers, which have increasingly small profit margins, but services that get them online and connected to a variety of entertainment sources after they've taken the device home.

Best Buy said it also plans to eventually expand the service to include TV shows.

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