LG Blu-ray box to offer CinemaNow, YouTube videos

The electronics company is out to capitalize on consumers' desire for entertainment online that can be viewed on their TVs.

Marguerite Reardon Former senior reporter
Marguerite Reardon started as a CNET News reporter in 2004, covering cellphone services, broadband, citywide Wi-Fi, the Net neutrality debate and the consolidation of the phone companies.
Marguerite Reardon

LG Electronics will add video streaming features from CinemaNow and YouTube to its 2009 lineup of networked Blu-ray players, the company said Tuesday.

The company will be showing off the new functionality at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) next week in Las Vegas. (Click here for CNET's complete coverage of CES 2009.)

LG launched its first network-connected Blu-ray player in July with partner Netflix. As part of the deal, viewers get access to more than 12,000 movies and TV shows from Netflix.

With Tuesday's announcement, LG Blu-ray customers will also get access to 14,000 movies and TV shows from CinemaNow. And they will be able to stream millions of Web videos directly from the Internet to an LG Network Blu-ray Player so they can watch it on their TVs.

The current economic slump is driving some consumers to cancel expensive cable or satellite TV packages and look for video content online. LG believes it can capitalize on this trend by making it easier for consumers to find entertainment online that can be viewed on their TVs.

"As millions of U.S. consumers view and download movies or TV shows through the Internet, they are demanding easier ways to access content and more home entertainment options," Tim Alessi, director of product development for LG Electronics USA, said in a statement. "From Blu-ray to instant streaming from Netflix to CinemaNow and YouTube, LG is bridging the gap between packaged media and video-on-demand services to provide entertainment solutions for consumers' demand for content."