Owners of Vudu’s set-top box, which costs $399, use a high-speed Internet connection to watch the movies they rent and to download the ones they buy.
Movies usually are released in staggered windows in different formats — DVD, online through Xbox Live and other companies, or on demand on cable.
But Hollywood studios are experimenting more with digital distribution, and a few have agreed to work with Vudu to sell HD movies, though the selection remains limited.
Vudu has signed HD distribution agreements with Paramount, Lionsgate, and Universal, but so far not Disney.
The Vudu box, which first went on sale in October, offers a catalog of about 5,000 standard-definition films, which can be rented for 99 cents to $4.99.
Technology keeps providing consumers with choices.