Vudu adds 1080p HD movies

Vudu has just announced to start offering 1080p high-def quality movies. From today the Video on Demand set-top service will start building a 1080p HD movie line-up.

Currently a Vudu set-top box costs $299 and it can store both standard-defintion and HDTV movies. The company already offered 720p movies, but will now include 65 movies in 1080p including Speed Racer and The Spiderwick Chronicles.

The company calls their high-def collection HDX and promises that the new 1080p movies will cost just as much as the 720p movies, meaning something between four or six dollars.

A disadvantage is the downloading time, which is estimated to be four hours for a 1080p movie. Currently Vudu is looking for an upgrade so that people can start their download from a remote destination, meaning you can check the inventory away from home, start downloading and watch it four hours later.

CNET reports that Vudu isn’t claming to rival the Blu-ray quality, but Vudu officials said that the service’s preview was impressive. “HDX displays content in the true cinematic gold standard of 1080p at 24 frames per second. Content in HDX is displayed at twice the resolution of other Internet HD formats and offers an ultra-detailed and virtually artifact free picture on any size screen.”

Until the end of this year Vudu offers a $200 credit to everyone who buys the $299 set-top box at Best Buy. Sounds very good, but the credit can only be used for four months on rentals.