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And Now, E-Commerce for Couch Potatoes

Online bookseller Barnes & Noble.com , in conjunction with DirectTV Inc. and Wink Communications, launched its own interactive e-commerce TV channel, calling it the first such dedicated e-commerce app in the United States.

New York City-based Barnes & Noble.com, whose stock has lately been flirting with the important-for-continued listing $1 level on Nasdaq, said that satellite TV viewers can now purchase the top 100 best selling books on the site at any time using their remote controls.

The new interactive shopping service is available on DirectTV's channel 496, for those customers with the DIRECTV Interactive Powered by Wink service.

Barnes & Noble.com said that book synopses and jacket images are shown to enhance the shopping experience, which lets customers select books, add them to the shopping cart and complete transactions using a four-digit PIN to charge the credit card on already on file.

The new service "delivers on the Barnes & Noble promise to bring the largest selection, best service and fastest delivery to book lovers across the country," said Robert Albert, vice president of strategy and business development at Barnes & Noble.com. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

The Barnes & Noble.com channel joins Instant Weather by The Weather Channel, ESPN Today, and the DirectTV Interactive Center as the fourth dedicated interactive channel available to customers with the Wink-enabled receivers manufactured by Thomson under the RCA brand. It's the first real e-commerce operation to use the service.

"The ease and convenience of buying bestseller books through your television is now a reality," said Marc Kirshbaum, vice president of strategic development at Alameda, Calif.-based Wink Communications .

DirectTV, a unit of Hughes Electronics Corp., says its digital satellite television service has more than 10 million customers.