Netgear adds ‘CinemaNow’ channel & more to NeoTV streaming player

With Roku appealing to Angry Bird-curious couch potatoes and Microsoft taking the first baby steps toward turning its Xbox 360 into a TV set-top box, Netgear has decided to keep expansion plans for its NeoTV streaming player simple. The networking powerhouse announced this week that several new channels are now available for the device, including Best Buy’s CinemaNow service.

Netgear adds 'CinemaNow' channel & more to NeoTV streaming player

“Instead of driving to a kiosk or waiting for movies to arrive by mail, NeoTV provides consumers with access to one of the world’s largest collections of premium movies, TV shows, music and web videos – thousands of titles instantly streamed to your TV,” said Damir Skripic, product line manager for connected entertainment at Netgear.

The NeoTV player also received support from international movie service Film Fresh, Databazaar’s Bollywood content and various international programming, including Germany’s Deutsche Welle and France’s Le Monde. New local web-based content from Discovery Channel, PBS and CNET rounded out the foreign additions.

Best Buy’s CinemaNow remains the biggest coup for Netgear’s media player, however. Acquired by the retail chain in 2009, it houses over 12,000 pieces of TV and film content for streaming rental or purchase. The app also hit Sony’s PlayStation 3 in October.

With Netflix and Hulu grabbing most of the headlines (and bandwidth), Netgear’s media player has its work cut out for it. Nabbing intriguing foreign content doesn’t hurt, but a price drop might prove more helpful. Rival Roku offers its 1080p streaming player for the same price as the $80 NeoTV. A 720p version rings up for $20 less, while an enhanced XS model sells for $100. (via Netgear)