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  • Vudu

Watching streaming movies and shows online has exploded in the recent years with the introduction of Netflix, Blockbuster, Hulu, and other related companies. Created by a group of seasoned people from places such as TiVo and 2wire, a company called Vudu was born in 2004. Acquired by corporate giant Wal-Mart in 2010 and signing closed door deals with major movie studios and distributors. Vudu is the only company that offers true 1080p high definition movies and shows through online streaming services.

Vudu was created with the idea of being not only a major competitor of Netflix, Blockbuster, Hulu etc.., but also as a standout by offering all of their movies and shows in HDX. HDX is the only video format available that offers true 1080p high definition viewing. No other Internet, cable, or satellite company has the ability to do that. The only way you can get that kind of picture is through Blu-ray discs. Most of those don’t even portray true 1080p either, rather 1080i instead.

When Vudu was first released they used their Vudu Boxee device to provide service. This was a device that looked more like a sub-woofer rather than a DVD player, and didn’t sell well. The reason for this was seen in the fact that Netflix and other related companies did not need a special device to play its movies and shows online. The Boxee was also expensive, and still is rather pricey. Vudu has since changed their ways and offer their services through multiple formats including: a wide variety of Blu-ray players and HDTVs, the Boxee program through Windows or Mac OS, or the Playstation 3. All three of these types of devices can receive and output true 1080p HDX videos. A downside to the service is the fact you have to have a pretty good Internet connection to truly enjoy Vudu. A 5 Mbps would be the lowest recommended and 15Mbps or better connection would be the best. The Vudu Boxee device is still available and if you are a movie guru, then it is definitely worth the $200 for the device.

The cost of the Vudu is very competitive. While you do have to have a device to run Vudu, whether it’s a PC/Mac, PS3, Boxee, or a Vudu enable Blu-ray or TV device, there isn’t anything else to buy. You do have to have a HDTV or monitor to display the 1080p videos, but many households are already switching over to a Blu-ray device of some sort, and most of them aren’t that expensive. Unlike many of its competitors, Vudu does not have a monthly subscription or mail-ins. All of Vudu’s 16,000+ videos is brought to you via the Internet. No matter if you have a PS3, Vudu enable device, or a use the free download of the Boxee program for PC/Mac, all of it is online. That is where Internet connection speed comes into play as well. All of Vudu’s movies are for rent for $2 for two nights. They also sell most all of their content anywhere from .99Вў to $24.99.

Overall Vudu seems to be still a relatively unknown company. The idea from Vudu’s creators may have been bitten by the fact that their idea was a little ahead of its time. Though the idea seems to be catching up with technology and the fact that many cities are installing fiber optics for Internet connections. This will ultimately lead to faster and eventually cheaper Internet connections. A fast Internet connection is required to truly enjoy what Vudu has to offer. Once these techs catch up to the idea Vudu has created, their services could possibly explode. Vudu is the only company to offer online streaming 1080p videos and they release the stream the same day the Blu-ray or DVD is released, unlike its competitors.