September 26, 2012, 11:42 AM

Nook is bringing video to e-readers—and beyond

Nook Video will offer movies and TV shows playable on Nooks, TVs, tablets and smartphones.

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Nook customers will be able to shop for streaming and downloadable films and TV shows starting this fall.

Barnes & Noble Inc. soon will offer streaming and downloadable video for sale, parlaying its relationships with some major film and TV studios into content viewable on Nook e-readers as well as on TVs, tablets and smartphones.

Content will be available from such studios as HBO, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Starz, Viacom and Warner Bros. Entertainment, plus select movies from The Walt Disney Studios. Content deals with other studios are also in the works, Barnes & Noble says.

Beginning this fall in the U.S. and in the holiday season in the U.K., Nook Video will offer customers content from a digital collection of standard and high-definition movies and TV shows available for streaming and download. Titles will include Disney-Pixar’s "Brave" and "Toy Story 3," Marvel’s "The Avengers," and other content such as "21 Jump Street," "Breaking Bad," "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart," "Game of Thrones," and the Harry Potter movies.

Videos streamed and downloaded from the Nook store will be housed in the Nook Cloud, an Internet-based service accessible by web-enabled devices, says Barnes & Noble, No. 32 in the Internet Retailer Top 500. Nook Video content can be viewed on Nooks and other devices via free Nook Video apps, which to the company says will be introduced soon. The video apps will function much like the e-reader apps, enabling customers to start, stop and resume watching where they left off on any of their connected devices.

Nook Video will also allow consumers to upload the movies and TV shows they’ve bought on compatible physical DVDs and Blu-ray discs for viewing via web-enabled devices through their UltraViolet accounts. UltraViolet is an industry standard that enables consumers that have purchased digital versions of movies and TV shows to access their content via the Internet.

Nook Video customers will be able to link their UltraViolet accounts to the Nook Cloud enabling them to view their previously and newly purchased UltraViolet-enabled movies and TV shows on Nook devices and Nook Video apps, as well as through other companies’ apps. In addition to purchasing a digital version via Nook Video, customers can shop for DVDs and Blu-ray discs with the UltraViolet logo in Barnes & Noble and other retail stores, add them to their digital collection, and watch compatible titles from the Nook Cloud.

“As one of the world’s largest retailers of physical video discs and digital copyrighted content, our new Nook Video service will give our customers another way to be entertained with a vast and growing digital video collection, as part of our expansive Nook Store,” says William Lynch, CEO of Barnes & Noble.

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