Sears and K-Mart will now be able to offer digital downloads of movies day-and-date with DVD, after a multi-year agreement was signed with distributers yesterday. The digital download service, called Alphaline Entertainment, runs on Sonic Solutions’ platform and will offer movies and TV shows for purchase and rental.
The deal will allow customers to download movies at the same time DVDs and Blu-ray Discs are released to stores, and digital purchases and rentals are made available to services such as CinemaNow, iTunes, and video-on-demand services from cable and satellite TV providers.
The movies will only be available at first to download on PCs (excluding Macs), but Sears hopes to make them available to view on HDTVs as well as mobile devices. According to sources, TV shows will sell for $1.99 each and new movies will sell for about $19.95 each. Movie rentals will cost about $3.99 per title.
The new service may give Sears and K-Mart an edge over subscription services such as Netflix, and kiosk movie rental company Redbox, who have to wait for the 30-day pay window before offering brand new titles. Blockbuster, however, offers movies inside the pay window via their on demand service.
Sonic Solutions, known for their Roxio product which Best Buy’s CinemaNow uses, recently acquired DivX Inc. to expand online digital services.