All About The VUDU On-Demand Video Streaming Service

VUDU offers an alternative to subsciption-based Netflix and Hulu

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Vudu homepage. Vudu
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VUDU is a Walmart-owned online video-on-demand streaming service that provides access to movies and TV shows. It offers a large library of movies and TV titles that may be rented and streamed to media streaming devices, smart TVs and home-theater components that have the Vudu app. If your device has a hard drive, you can also choose to own a movie by downloading and saving it.

Pay Only for the Movies or TV Shows You Want

Vudu does not require a monthly subscription fee.

Instead, you pay for each of the movies or TV shows that you want to rent or own. Rental pricing ranges from $.99 to $5.99, and purchase prices generally range from $4.99 to $24.99. VUDU also offers special rental and purchase pricing on continuing basis, which will be promoted on their website.

Getting Started with VUDU

To start with VUDU, you must set up an account by entering your email and a password and credit card information for instant payments of rentals or movies you want to buy.

When renting a movie, you can choose to stream it and watch it immediately or you can choose to watch them later. You have to watch the movie within 30 days of the day you rented it. Once you start watching, you have 24 hours to finish watching it or to watch as many times as you'd like within the time period.&nb

Choose the Video Quality to Match Your Internet Speed

You can choose from three levels of video quality - "SD" for standard definition, "HD" for high definition 720p resolution, "HDX" for 1080p resolution and "UHD" for 4K (find out what you need to access and use VUDU's 4K video streaming option)

Higher quality video and audio are larger files that require a faster internet connection.

Before selecting the quality level, your device can check your connection speed so the movie won't stall to buffer while streaming. If you run into difficulties streaming a movie, Vudu offers to downgrade the quality level during your viewing.

If you have a slower connection and want to watch the video in higher quality, choose the "watch later" option when you rent the movie.

While Vudu is an online service, it is only available on devices that have the app and is not available for streaming movies to your computer.

In addition to rental and purchase, here some additional viewing services that VUDU Offers.

VUDU Movies On Us

Although VUDU is an on-demand pay-per-view service, they also offer a selection of movies that you can view for free, called Movies On Us. The offering movies that consist of fairly recent films that are no longer in big rental or purchase demand, as well as older or lesser-known movies, but most are definitely worth checking out. The only catch, there may be limited commercials.

VUDU also offers movie trailers and clips that can be viewed for free.

However, in order to view Movies on Us or other free content, you still need to sign in with your VUDU username and password.

UltraViolet Digital Copy

When you purchase a DVD or Blu-ray Disc, often times they provide access to a VUDU UltraViolet Digital Copy. This means that using a special code that is provided in the disc package, you can play a digital version of your movie on compatible mobiles devices and PCs.

The good thing is that the digital copy is free as it is included in the price of the DVD or Blu-ray Disc. However, there may be an expiration date). Also, if it is a digital copy of a Blu-ray disc, it may, or may not be a high-resolution version of the content.

VUDU Instawatch

Similar to the UltraViolet service, as part of Walmart's ownership of Vudu, the big-box store has a program called Vudu Instawatch.

When you buy a qualifying DVD or Blu-ray Disc movie or TV show at Walmart, as long as you have current VUDU or Walmart.com account you get instant access to a free digital copy that you can access on VUDU and view on compatible devices (smartphones, tablets, PCs, laptops).

If you buy the Blu-ray or DVD at a physical Walmart store - just use your smartphone to scan your receipt and proceed with any further instructions.

If you buy the Blu-ray or DVD online through Walmart.com - just check your email for a message that provides access to the digital copy.

Free Movies Anywhere

Another flexible viewing option for VUDU movies and shows is Free Movies Anywhere

This service requires you to establish a separate login account with the Movies Anywhere platform and link it to your VUDU account.

What makes Free Movies Anywhere different is that you can use the VUDU streaming service to play back digital versions of movies on mobile or other compatible devices from select studios that you purchased for other digital services (including Google Play and iTunes) in addition to VUDU.

Movie studios that support Movies Anywhere include:

  • 20th Century Fox
  • Sony Pictures
  • Universal Pictures
  • Walt Disney Studios
  • Warner Bros. Pictures

Disc-to-Digital

Another practical service that VUDU offers is Disc-to-Digital. This service offers viewers that own older movies on DVD (which are in standard definition) the opportunity to access an HDX (1080p) near Blu-ray Disc quality digital version for a very low fee (ranging from $2 to $5).

Viewers can then access the high-quality digital copy at any time on compatible mobile or home streaming devices.

The conversion process can be initiated through a compatible mobile phone or on a Laptop or Desktop PC. Of course, you still get to keep your DVD.

The Bottom Line

You can browse through VUDU at any time on a PC, TV, or mobile device without establishing a VUDU login (sort of like window shopping), but to access any free or paid content, you need to establish a VUDU login.

There is no cost to sign up for a login - you only pay when you want to watch movie or TV show that requires a rental or purchase fee.

Things to keep in mind:

  • Movie titles are usually available on the same date (or earlier) than their physical Blu-ray or DVD counterpart.
  • Some titles are rental only, some are purchase only, and some are both.
  • Titles may be able in one or more formats SD, HDX, or UHD - each format has a different price.
  • A film or TV show might also be available on physical disc. If you order the physical disc version, it will be shipped to you via Walmart.com.
  • For those that have 3D TV or video projector viewing setups, VUDU offers a 3D viewing option with a selection of past and current 3D films that can be rented or owned (digital version). All 3D films are in HDX resolution.

If you are looking for video streaming service that offers a lot of content access and playback flexibility and doesn't require a monthly subscription fee like Netflix or Hulu, then check out VUDU.

Disclaimer: The core content of this article was originally written by Barb Gonzalez, but has been edited, reformatted, and updated by Robert Silva.