Until Amazon launched its Prime Instant Video
service earlier this year Netflix
was almost completely alone on the subscription video streaming mountaintop, but an article this weekend in the Los Angeles Times
suggests there could be competition on the way. There's plenty of rumoring from analysts and the typical "people familiar with the matter, but their sources have been on the money in the past and indicate retailers like Walmart and Best Buy are seriously considering angling their Vudu
efforts in the subscription direction instead of VOD like they've done so far. Meanwhile Hulu Plus is reportedly considering expanding its movie selection, and Amazon is likely to puff up its offerings while iN Demand
, the PPV baby of the cable companies, is considering expanding its 200~ title Vutopia service. Still, according to the article no one's signed any of the big checks necessary to take on the 20-million subscribers strong behemoth
yet, but don't be surprised if serious competition arrives shortly.