Now that the PlayStation Move is out the door, Sony figures it’s time to turn the PS3 from an exercise-inducing body-moving system back into the couch-potato fantasy that was always intended: Sony and Vudu have announced that Vudu high-definition streaming movies will be available next week in the United States. Tapping into Vudu won’t require a subscription (you pay per individual movie), but does require a PlayStation Network registration to get up and running—PS3 owners just need to go to the PlayStation Store and download the free Vudu application.
Vudu offers high-definition films for instant rental and purchase, streaming to users in HD and HDX 1080p formats, often with 5.1 Dolby Digital Plus surround sound. Vudu carries many recent releases the same day they’re released on DVD or Blu-ray. The Vudu application also enables users to recommend movies and programming to friends via integrated social networking tools.
The deal makes the PS3 the only gaming console to offer Vudu streaming movies.
Before the end of the year, Vudu is promising to upgrade the PlayStation 3 application to support Vudu 2.0, a revamped version of the Vudu interface that aims to improve basic browsing and navigation, as well as deliver content recommendations based on a user’s viewing history.
Vudu rental fees typically range from $3.99 to $5.99 (although they can dip as low as $0.99), depending on the resolution of the movies. Many movie titles are available to own for fees typically ranging from $9.99 to $19.99, with extremes as low as $4.99 and as high as $24.99.