When people think of CES 2013, they definitely think of Walmart. They really don’t, but the retail chain actually did make an appearance with intent to announce new features. We’re surprised as well. However, it isn’t the first time a retail chain has announced something at a large tech show.
Walmart intends to expand on their previous disc-to-digital service. In case you’re not familiar with the premise, customers would sign up for an account on VUDU. Then, they would take their DVDs and Blu-ray videos into Walmart where a Walmart representative would add them to their VUDU accounts to watch at home. Essentially, it’s allowing you to watch movies you already bought on a streaming service for free.
Unfortunately, the big issue with it is that people have to go to Walmart in order to do this. At CES 2013, Walmart announced that this problem would be no more. Starting in February, customers will be able to do all of the previously mentioned steps at home on their own. No more traveling to Walmart carrying every movie you own. The new service is called UltraViolet.
This sounds kind of cool, how does Walmart make this work?
Well, there is most likely going to be some method where customers will have to prove they own the movies. Aside from that, they can pay $2 per DVD or Blu-ray conversion. For $5, customers can increase the standard DVD quality to HD quality. For those who own several hundred movies, it’s quite an investment. However, it’s definitely a beneficial one as streaming media is starting to take over.
The mobile apps for iOS devices and Android are already available for download, although the service won’t be available for another month or so. In addition, as Slashgear reports, Walmart has also announced that new customers will be given 10 free, pre-selected movies to people who sign up for UltraViolet or link an existing VUDU account.