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Walmart Begins Home Installation Program

10/22/2009 02:39:40 PM Eastern

Bentonville, Ark. - Walmart
has begun offering home installation services for TVs, home theaters and PCs
through a partnership with NEW.

The services, which start at $99 for
a basic TV installation and $129 for a basic PC setup, will be sold via prepaid
cards displayed on descriptive merchandisers and within the home-theater and
computer aisles.

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The offering follows a major
assortment and display upgrade within Walmart's CE departments, and represents
a major step toward filling the service vacuum that separates full-line
discount stores from specialty CE dealers.

The install program has already been
introduced in some stores, and is expected to be rolled out nationwide by
month's end, a Wal-Mart spokesperson told TWICE.

"It's an affordable and simple
solution, and a real benefit to our customers," the spokesperson said.

Unlike a similar NEW program that
will debut at Wal-Mart's Sam's Club division on Nov. 1, the Walmart offering
does not include home delivery.

The in-home visits will be made by
NEW's nationwide network of about 11,000 certified and insured
installers. Basic TV services include a
pre-installation consultation, TV placement, hook-ups to two A/V components, remote
control configuration, packaging clean-up, and a follow-up visit and tutorial.

Walmart's premium TV service, for
$339, also provides wall mounting, concealed in-wall wiring and two additional
A/V component hook-ups.

PC services range from $129 to $199
and include software installation, peripheral hook-ups, data transfer, hard-drive
defragmentation and tutorials.