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@Home teams for online store

Release Software is teaming up with high-speed cable Net access company @Home to create an online software store.

Software company Release Software is teaming up with high-speed cable Net access company @Home to create an online software store, the companies announced today.

The deal shows how cable access companies are trying to leverage the high speeds they can provide to get users onto the Net.

It also is part of an ongoing trend for online services to team up with

 
CNET Radio's Brian Cooley speaks with John Garner, manager of media development, @Home
purveyors of software hoping to reach captive audiences on the services. Just last week, for instance, online giant America Online cut a deal with Software.net to reach AOL's customers.

In today's deal, Release Software and @Home will locate the store, called SoftwareNow, on @Home's server. The store is a joint venture of the two entities. Customers will be able to download software directly.

And in another Net trend, people will be able to try out the software before either renting or purchasing it.

Although software often is sold on the Net, home users with slower dial-up connections face lengthy download times that can discourage them from online buying.

Clearly, Release Software and @Home are hoping the higher speeds cable access promises will encourage customers to download frequently, especially since customers are not obligated to purchase the software.