Walmart today announced that a new update to the mobile app for its streaming movie service, VUDU, will allow customers to scan and digitize any physical DVD or Blu-Ray into digital form for a price between $2 and $5, right from their smartphone. The update is an expansion of Walmart's "Disc-to-Digital" in-house service, which encouraged customers to bring their physical movies to a local Walmart to transfer them into cloud storage, and in recent years also added digital conversion on home computers.
Now, Mobile Disc-to-Digital will work on both iOS and Android devices and will support nearly 8,000 films from Lionsgate, Paramount Home Media Distribution, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Universal Pictures Home Entertainment and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. VUDU said it intends to keep adding support from more distributors over the coming months.
“The average movie collector owns nearly 100 DVDs and Blu-rays. We know these customers have invested a lot into building their physical movie collections,” said Jeremy Verba, general manager, Vudu. “As more and more customers create digital libraries, we are constantly looking for ways to help them unlock additional value from the movies they already own.”
“Like Walmart, at Vudu we’re always striving to save our customers time and money,” added Verba. “Our Mobile Disc-to-Digital service is a key part of Vudu’s broader effort to make digital entertainment access simple and convenient.”
To convert a movie into a digital copy, customers must navigate to the new disc-to-digital section of the VUDU app and scan the physical barcode of the film they want to digitize. Here they will be presented with digital options and prices: converting a DVD to SD or a Blu-ray disc to HDX costs $2, while converting a DVD to the higher-definition HDX costs $5. Users can keep scanning and adding movies in bulk, and once the digitalization is finished, all of the movies can be viewed on any VUDU-enabled device.
To ensure that users are scanning in copies of films that they have already purchased, the VUDU app will enable disc-to-digital conversions only when it can determine that the user is at their designated home/billing address.
VUDU is available on the iPhone and iPad [Direct Link], and today's Mobile Disc-to-Digital update will go live at 12:00 p.m. EDT. An engineer working for the streaming company recently confirmed that an Apple TV app is in development, with no clear timetable as to when it might debut.