Vudo Video Service Coming To Panasonic Blu-ray Players - InformationWeek

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Infrastructure // PC & Servers

Vudo Video Service Coming To Panasonic Blu-ray Players

Panasonic's Viera Cast-enabled Blu-ray player is the latest device in a growing list of high-definition TVs and players supporting Vudu's Internet-video service.

Vudu says its service for delivering high-definition movies to Internet-connected devices will be available on Panasonic's premium Blu-ray disc players, adding to Vudu's growing list of supported TVs and players from major manufacturers.

The Vudu service, introduced Monday, will be available on Panasonic's Viera Cast-enabled Blu-ray disc players. Viera Cast is Panasonic's smart TV platform that makes it possible to stream Internet video directly to the consumer electronics maker's high-definition TVs and Blu-ray players.

Vudu makes its service accessible through an application installed on partners' HDTVs and Blu-ray players. Manufacturers that also offer Vudu-enabled devices include LG, Mitsubishi, Samsung, Sanyo, Sharp, Toshiba and Vizio. The first console to support the service is Sony's PlayStation 3, which Vudu says will be available later this month.

People with the Panasonic Blu-ray player will be able to access the Vudu movie service beginning Nov. 24. Vudu makes new HD movies available either for rent or purchase the same day they are released on DVD. While the company is focused on HD video, it also offers movies in standard format for customers with slower broadband speeds. HD movies require a minimum download speed of 2.25 Mb per second.

Vudu also offers applications for access video and photos from Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and other sites. The company's platform also offers free Internet radio from Pandora.

Vudu does not offer a monthly subscription service, like those adopted by online movie rental companies. Earlier this year, the company became a wholly owned subsidiary of Wal-Mart. Launched in 2006, the Vudu struggled before the acquisition against tough competition from Netflix, Hulu, and others.

Netflix on Monday launched a streaming-only video subscription service in the U.S. for $7.99 a month for an unlimited number of movies. However, Netflix's library of new movies remains limited, due to Hollywood's decision to favor the more profitable DVD business.


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