Walmart Might Be Selling Vudu to NBCUniversal

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NBCUniversal is said to be in talks to buy Vudu. The popular streaming service is currently owned by Walmart and could represent a major move if the deal was to go through.

NBCU is fairly late to the streaming market and has still yet to launch its major streaming service, Peacock. However, when Peacock does launch it is expected to make an impact and especially considering the company will be offering three different pricing tiers, including a free plan.

A new report from the Wall Street Journal indicated that NBCU is in “advanced talks” with Walmart to buy the Vudu streaming service, with the report citing “people familiar with the matter” for the information. If the deal goes ahead it will further add to the existing model NBCU has undertaken with its new service as Vudu also offers a free and paid tier. With Vudu focused on both AVOD and TVOD strategies, a purchase like this could see NBC competing on all fronts, considering its own service fills in the SVOD gap currently missing from Vudu.

The streaming wars replaced with the buying wars

This report comes on the same day that another report suggested Fox was in talks to purchase the free streaming service, Tubi. Both of which come weeks after reports that Comcast is looking to acquire another free streaming service, Xumo. All of which follows the acquisition of Pluto TV last year by Viacom prior to the formation of ViacomCBS.

If all the reports are correct and the deals go through, it would seem the streaming wars have very much morphed into the buying wars. Furthermore, this would see an almost overnight return of a number of major TV brands into prime positions, albeit this time within the streaming market.

The one aspect that all of these (on the very of being purchased) services have in common is that they all offer a free access tier. In terms of Xumo and Tubi, they are completely free services which further goes to highlight how important the free, ad-supported market is becoming.

Regardless of whether the deals do go through as suggested, the clear takeaway here is that these companies are trying to secure established streaming services, and especially those that focus on delivering free content to millions of users.

Source: WSJ

John Finn
John Finn

By John Finn

John Finn is the Founder and Editor of Streaming Better, a platform created in 2019 to help consumers navigate the complicated live TV streaming and subscription service market.

John has been covering technology for various online publications since 2014. After originally covering the wider tech industry as a writer and editor, John now spends his time focusing on the emerging video-streaming market, including live TV streaming, SVOD, AVOD, FAST, and TVOD services.

In a bid to keep up to date on the industry, John actively subscribes to multiple streaming services at the same time. However, John continues to advocate that the best approach for consumers is to rotate between streaming services as needed.

A Psychology graduate from England, who now lives in the US, John previously worked in the aviation industry as an airline reviewer. While reviewing airlines isn't quite the same as reviewing devices and streaming services, John brings the same analytical eye to all of his reviews and industry analysis, along with a special emphasis on what's best for the consumer.

Connect with John
X: @J_Finns

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