Walmart already has Vudu, but it wants to launch something that will more directly compete with Netflix, according to a new report.
OK, let's back up a minute: Vudu, an online video store, is a pay-per-use service. That means it has you pay for movies and shows you intend to watch, with rentals starting at $0.99, and purchases starting at $3.99. Netflix, on the other hand, is a subscriptions service, where you pay a monthly fee and then get carte blanche access to its entire catalogue of content. Walmart apparently wants to go that route now.
It's planning to offer of its own subscription service that’s branded under the Vudu name, according to Variety. The service would offer both licensed content with original video - just like Netflix, as well as Hulu and Amazon Prime Video. Variety claimed that it would cost around $8 a month. Keep in mind Walmart’s video-on-demand plans were first reported earlier this week by The Information.
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In other words, that makes two well-sourced reports in the past week, so, suffice to say, this may actually be happening. But the move makes sense for Walmart, which purchased Vudu in 2010 and often has the app preinstalled on some streaming hardware and smart TVs. It’s perfectly reasonable to assume the company could use its existing relationships with Hollywood to cut streaming deals.
Variety said Walmart has already talked with media partners, and that it is gunning for a launch in the fourth quarter of 2018. There's no word yet on whether it'll be available outside the US, such as in the UK.