02.25.2009 12:55 PM
Vudu to Sell, Rent HD Movie Downloads
Move over, Blu-ray. You've got some company in the 1080p movie content department.
Vudu said this week it will be first up with a VOD service that allows users to download HD motion pictures and other content to the firm's proprietary 1080p Internet Movie Player for TV set viewing, starting now. Vudu said it now boasts the largest HD movie library out there—some 1,400 titles.
Titles can be "download-rented" for a specific period of time. By comparison, Netflix said it has about 1,300 HD titles to rent, although it has no "set limit" for viewing.
Yet for Vudu, the unavailability of many major titles for sale may be a drawback. Based in Santa Clara, Calif., the firm now has only about 50 HD movies (most of them from independent studios) that currently are available for download-to-own. 1080p movies offered in this collection will be available to buy using either "instant HD" or Vudu's HDX format at the same price, which ranges between $14 to $24 per title to buy.
Early offerings include the 2009 Oscar-winning documentary "Man on Wire," along with "Transsiberian" and "War, Inc.," two other docs.
HD titles purchased from Vudu can be stored on a Vudu set-top box or via a free online storage service from Vudu.Read all of HD Notebook here.