NBC buys Vudu to wage war with Amazon, Apple and other streaming services

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(Image credit: NBC)

Fandango, the once-popular online movie ticket marketplace that spun off into a streaming service, has announced that it will purchase Vudu from Walmart. 

The companies made the announcement on Monday and say that the deal, while officially closed, will take awhile to come into effect.

Talk about a blue light special.

A Vudu spokesperson says that Fandango and NBCUniversal's primary goal for the purchase is to expand the amount of content for sale on FandangoNOW, and says that both services will still run as normal in the interim. Even after the transition, that spokesperson told CNET, customers will still be able to use their Walmart login and Walmart wallet for Vudu purchases, too – so don’t worry about losing your purchases.

Let’s make a deal 

What makes the situation interesting is that NBCUniversal, the company that owns Fandango, already owns a few streaming services.

One of those, obviously, is FandangoNOW, a streaming service that specializes in straight-from-theater releases.

Another is Peacock, NBC’s own streaming service that just launched to select Xfinity customers earlier this week. NBC Peacock will have its own original content as well as previously aired shows from NBC and movies from Universal.

On top of all that will sit Vudu, a streaming service that jumped on the 4K HDR/Dolby Vision bandwagon early and was acquired by Walmart back in 2010. It has one of the largest digital marketplaces for movies and, when combined with FandangoNOW's catalog, could pose a serious threat to iTunes, Amazon Video and Google Play Movies and TV, the three leaders in the video marketplace.

How, exactly, Fandango and NBCUniversal will leverage that library remains to be seen, but in a competitive arena like video streaming, these services need every advantage they can get.

Nick Pino

Nick Pino is Managing Editor, TV and AV for TechRadar's sister site, Tom's Guide. Previously, he was the Senior Editor of Home Entertainment at TechRadar, covering TVs, headphones, speakers, video games, VR and streaming devices. He's also written for GamesRadar+, Official Xbox Magazine, PC Gamer and other outlets over the last decade, and he has a degree in computer science he's not using if anyone wants it.