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Walmart Reportedly In Talks To Buy Vizio

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Vizio Quantum TV

Walmart is reportedly in talks to purchase Vizio. This would be a major move by the retail giant and one which would further increase its presence at the hardware level. According to the details, the move would also specifically be used to improve Walmart’s advertising presence and impact.

Unlike many TV models sold from other brands, Vizio smart TVs come running on the company’s own operating system. Vizio has refined the software over the years and the ability to sell ads is one of the added benefits of this type of direct-to-device approach.

According to a new report from the Wall Street Journal, Walmart is now eyeing up that ad business by considering buying Vizio. Citing “people familiar with the situation,” the deal could be worth more than $2 billion.

While Walmart has recently expanded more into the hardware market through its Onn-branded devices, Vizio would significantly improve the retail giant’s device footprint in homes. On that point, the move is being viewed as a way for Walmart to increase the number of places “where it can sell ads and pitch shoppers on goods,” according to the WSJ.

As is often the case with reports like this, discussions are thought to still be at an early stage and it is possible that they may not progress beyond the discussion stage.

If a move was to go ahead, however, it would better place Walmart in a position to compete with Amazon, a company that already has a foothold in the home device market through its Fire TV platform, and a company that already makes use of ads on those devices.

Amazon is also believed to be currently in the process of moving its Fire TV platform away from Android. A migration to its own operating system like this would result in a far greater level of control, with ownership of the hardware, software and data further improving its direct-to-device advertising strategy.

This exact same thinking is likely what’s behind Walmart’s reported interest in purchasing Vizio.

John Finn

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