No offense to Vudu but it’s not going to play in Peoria. Vudu appears to be a brilliant innovation in movie downloading, partly because it allows the user to start watching the show immediately and thus offers true “on demand” movies.
However it takes a lot more than being the best of the lot in terms of providing a user with streaming movies on demand to be a successful company. Much of the company’s, mainstream media’s, and blogosphere’s breathless gushing about this product is ridiculous. Mom and pop are NOT going to pay hundreds of dollars for a Vudu box *plus* pay per movie fees so they can have a downloadable movie experience.
This is another of the hundreds of silly silicon valley ideas that seem reasonable to sharp, young tech folks pulling down $10,000 per month who are not intimidated (in fact who like) stylish new gadgets and having a 10th remote control in their living room arsenal. Unfortunately for Vudu and other startups catering to this group, this group is a tiny fraction of all consumers and almost totally non-representative.
Early adopters? Sure, but it’ll be years before people demand the type of experience Vudu is offering.
Vudu, unless they find a way to provide really cheap hardware and really cheap downloads (they won’t find this), will fail as soon as the VC cash burns up.
Fueling the IPOD revolution was free (though often illegal) content. The crackdown on illegal online music distribution has been somewhat successful, and it’s much easier to stop online movie distribution which remains a relatively small problem for the industry.
Instead of too little too late Vudu is offering too much too early at too high a price.
I don’t believe in Vudu.