Walmart has officially stepped into the free movie streaming service game and is entering the fight to kill cable TV. Their streaming service Vudu, which has been used to rent HD movies and TV shows online for the better part of a decade, has just launched a new service called Vudu Movies On Us. The service will now be offering thousands of free movies and TV shows in HD and with premium sound.
The announcement was made by the company on the official Vudu blog, revealing that tons of content will now be made available for free. The only catch is that there will be ad breaks, but free is free. Walmart and Vudu had reportedly considered getting into the subscription-based streaming model, but according to Jeremy Verba, VP and GM of Vudu, the free streaming model made more sense for them at the moment.
"There's no better value than free. We see a gap in the marketplace for watching free HD movies on-demand."
One of the appeals of renting a movie or streaming TV show on Vudu is that they pride themselves on the quality of the video. Even though there will be ads while watching content with Vudu Movies On Us, the content will all be streamed in 1080p HD and with Dolby Digital sound when available. So, with that, they will have a definite leg up on other competitors in the same space, such as Sony's free streaming service Crackle. In terms of content, there won't be any brand new movies made available, but the selection is pretty solid to start off. Some of the more notable titles include True Grit, Young Adult, School of Rock, Winter's Bone and Point Break.
There is a lot of competition in the streaming video service market right now, but Netflix is absolutely dominating when it comes to subscription services. In terms of free streaming services, like Vudu Movies On Us, the door is wide open for someone to come in and dominate. Crackle and other such services do have an audience, but nobody has truly owned the space yet and there is most certainly demand for it. Not only that, but the movies on the new Vudu service won't be totally bogged down with ads. It will primarily be pre-roll ads with only some mid-roll ads.
Vudu Movies On Us will first be made available to already registered users with the service who have made a purchase on Vudu previously. Soon, the service will be marketed on a mass scale via Walmart.com and in Walmart stores, which should generate quite a bit of attention to the service. So if you have ever rented a movie or made a purchase on Vudu in the past, you can check out the service for yourself now. It is available on a ton of platforms, such as Xbox One, PS4, Roku, Apple TV as well as smartphones and tablets.