Online VOD service Vudu upgrades to HD quality

The US based online VOD service Vudu has started to offer HD versions of movies in a quality that American reviewers call “almost as good as Blu-ray”. However, there is one catch: users have to download each movie before watching.

The HD movies, which Vudu calls HDX, deliver “twice the quality available from any internet, or broadcast on-demand service, offering consumers a true cinematic experience with a vividly detailed and virtually artifact free picture accompanied by high-resolution, immersive sound,” according to the press release. The new HDX format films are offered at the same price as standard HD titles.

Vudu has already compiled a library of more than 50 films available now in the new HDX format and will be offering every HD title released on Vudu in the format. The VOD service will also be encoding many of the HD movies in the existing catalogue into HDX.

Vudu users have to buy a $299 box to connect their TV-set to the internet to get access to a library of around 6,000 movies and 4,000 TV shows. “Rentals” for 24 hours cost betweeb $2 to $4 per title. Purchases, which are stored on the machine’s expandable hard drive, cost about the same as DVDs.

So far, Vudu is only available in the US.