Walmart today announced that would acquire Vudu, a digital entertainment provider. The deal is expected to close in the next few weeks, and although official financial details haven't been disclosed, rumors indicate the retail behemoth will dole out over $100 million -- quite a bit more than some folks previously speculated. According to AllThingsD, Vudu's compression technology attracted multiple bidders, one of them possibly being Cisco.
Vudu, if you haven't heard of it, is a video streaming service similar to that offered by Amazon, Netflix, Blockbuster, and Roxio CinemaNow. Vudu has focused on landing deals to get its service embedded into consumer electronics from companies such as Samsung, LG and others.
Walmart, who happens to sell a considerable amount of DVDs, Blu-rays, and related devices, could be in a prime position to score deals with studios and manufacturers. The company's interest Vudu underlines the perpetual shift from physical to digital media, and marks the company's second attempt at offering downloadable movies.
Meanwhile, Vudu seems to be making out well. The service has licensing agreements with a number of major movie studios and offers around 16,000 movies, including "the largest 1080p library" of on-demand videos anywhere. Despite that, the startup has yet to turn a profit.