Given the sudden video-on-demand glut, we’re beginning to see the players expand their offerings and presentation to attract and retain customers. For example, Microsoft is adding a second video service (Netflix) within a redesigned interface. And now Vudu is offering adult content (aka porn) to their existing library of movies and television shows. The AVN Channel provides:
- Access hundreds of titles from leading studios
- Broad selection sortable by genre, studio, and performer
- HD availability on some titles
- Competitive pricing (rent or purchase)
- Discreet billing (movie titles do not appear on statement)
Vudu’s implementation of adult video actually reminds me of TiVo’s KidZone. While the target audience and content are vastly (and obviously) quite distinct, Vudu and TiVo both replicate their entire interface and populate it with a subset of content behind a PIN. As you can see in the video I shot (above), access to the AVN Channel is set in the Parental Controls area. Not only can the adult content be password protected, the area can optionally be (mostly) hidden from view. (Though, if my math is right (3^5), your motivated teen would only need to cycle through 243 pin combinations to find the key.) As with the current Vudu movie lineup, most adult content appears to be SD. However, I’ve found (non-porn) SD Vudu movie rentals quite watchable on my HDTV… and higher quality than say Amazon Unbox on TiVo.
Vudu is in a unique position to add porn. Their hardware and service ($299) seem to be highly regarded, yet they have don’t have the bullseye footprint of an Apple, Netflix, or TiVo… So the risk of public backlash is low, while the potential rewards of new customers (or more revenue from existing) is high. Though it remains to be seen whether this is will big win for Vudu as a comparitive advatange over say an Apple TV box or if it mainly reduces the value of the forthcoming adult content FyreTV STB.