Vudu offers first digital movie cards in SPHE deal for 'Battle: Los Angeles'

Video-on-demand service Vudu, which is owned by Walmart, this week is making Battle: Los Angeles available online via a digital movie card being sold at the retailer.

Battle: Los Angeles (publicity still)

Battle: Los Angleles (pictured) will be the first movie Vudu offers as a digital movie card. Source:Columbia Pictures

The movie card, which was available the same day the film came out on disc, costs $14.96 for standard definition quality (no HD is available online), compared to DVD and Blu-ray disc prices of $28.95 and $36.96 respectively. It allows users to view the film on a computer browser or from one of more than 300 Vudu-enabled CE devices, including HDTVs, Blu-ray Disc players and the PlayStation 3.

"Digital movie cards are a great way for Walmart's millions of movie customers to own and watch digital movies through the VUDU service," said Edward Lichty, Vudu's GM. "By partnering with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment on this exclusive, new movie card, we're transforming a physical purchase into a digital ownership experience, in a way that is easy for customers to understand and access." 

Sony in May announced it was adding the Vudu movie service to its 2011 line of Blu-ray disc players, giving users instant access to Vudu's film library. The latest deal, an industry first, shows how hard the studio is working to redefine the market as DVD sales slow.

"Digital movie cards allow us to take digital transactions into high-traffic, brick and mortar retail environments like Walmart, and provide a bridge from the DVD aisle into the digital age," said John Calkins, EVP of global digital and commercial innovation for SPHE. "Our goal is not only to educate off-line consumers about the digital films and services available to them, but also to increase the convenience of buying and gifting digital content."

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