NBCUniversal is in advanced conversations to purchase Vudu, Walmart’s video service, according to The Wall Street Journal. Although the talks “may not lead to a deal,” it sounds like NBCUniversal – part of Comcast, an investor in The edgeThe parent company Vox Media – has some ideas for what it would do with Vudu.
“Vudu’s ad-supported service would complement Peacock,” according to NBCUniversal, the stand-alone streaming service, according to log. In the meantime, the activities for renting and buying digital films are said to be linked to Fandango. (Did you know that the app with which you often buy cinema tickets is owned by Comcast? Now you do that.) Fandango also has its own FandangoNOW streaming service, but this does not have as many pick-up options as consumers with Vudu.
The ad-supported free layer from Vudu was introduced in October 2016and the service now offers a large mix of TV shows and movies that can be streamed on demand without paying anything. Like the log notes that interest in these advertising-supported services has increased in recent years. Roku has found great success with The Roku Channel. Viacom bought Pluto TV in 2019. And today, the log also reported (separately) that Fox is interested in bragging Tubi, another video-streaming platform supported by advertisements. Vudu has also dealt with the original programming, but nothing has really resonated with viewers.
Aside from free streaming, Vudu is known to home theater enthusiasts for its excellent video streaming quality, which uses higher bit rates than some other services. Even before 4K took over, Vudu focused on improving 1080p streaming with its “HDX” layer. The company has also implemented several disk-to-digital programs to help consumers add the movies they own on DVD or Blu-ray to their digital collection.
For the people who enjoy using Vudu, these changes floated in the logThe report is unlikely to cause much excitement. An NBCUniversal-owned Vudu can quickly become very bloated and Vudu would lose the independent status that has contributed to the expansion of its niche in recent years. Now it seems that it is another tool in the streaming war arsenal of NBCUniversal.
Both NBCUniversal and Walmart refused to comment on the rumors, but reports from last fall showed that the retail giant was looking for a buyer for its video streaming activities. Vudu is used on more than 100 million devices, Walmart said at the time.