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CNET debuts Snap Online

After a year of behind-the-scenes development, CNET launches its new consumer online service called Snap Online.

After a year of behind-the-scenes development, CNET: The Computer Network (CNWK) is launching its new consumer online service today, called Snap Online.

The free service is CNET's drive to break into the online services market and compete with the likes of America Online (AOL).

Snap features both a comprehensive Web site aimed at people who are looking for a way to organize the overwhelming amount of content on the Net, as well as a free CD-ROM that will allow new users to learn the Net and get online easily.

The site is organized by channels such as business, news, health, communities, and entertainment that have deep links to information.

CNET has amassed a number of partners for Snap: ISPs, hardware makers, marketers, and retailers. Tom Melcher, general manager of Snap, today announced several new partners: First Chicago National Bank, Hilton Hotels, 3Com, Universal Studios, Virtual Emporium, and the Zone Network.

CNET also announced distribution relationships with Bell Atlantic, Brigadoon.com, Frontline Communications, JPS.net, Surfree.com, and Whole Earth Networks. Those join previously announced ISPs distributing Snap. Those were the following: AT&T WorldNet, BellSouth.net, Concentric Network, EarthLink Network, MCI Internet, MindSpring. and Sprint Internet Passport.

Snap Online is a division of CNET: The Computer Network, which publishes NEWS.COM.