Irvine-Based VIZIO May Lead the Web-olution

COAST Magazine
By: Orion Tippens
November 16, 2009

The Internet is replacing television as we know it.

Streaming Web sites like Hulu and YouTube are on the rise, turning many of us couch potatoes into chair potatoes. We can now watch "The Daily Show" on Hulu, the first few seasons of "Lost" through Netflix online and "SpongeBob SquarePants" on Nickelodeon’s official Web site. All this and more can be watched legally for a small fee or free – if you just endure the sponsor ads.

The next evolutionary step to this has been taken by Vizio, the fast-growing upstart in the HDTV business hailing from Orange County's own Irvine.

This year, Vizio has launched its own Vizio Internet Apps, a wireless, online-enabled feature on its own select XVT series HDTVs. With this internal feature, these TVs are set up for many services including: Amazon, Video On Demand, Blockbuster On Demand, Netflix, Pandora, Rhapsody, RadioTime, Revision 3, Rallypoint Sports, Showtime TV, and Vudu. To top it off, Vizio also includes a full QWERTY Bluetooth remote.

While larger companies, including Samsung and Sony, have taken similar steps, there is something special about Vizio. For one, Vizio stands out for being less expensive, yet as reliable as the more familiar names, according to a recent Consumer Reports blog post. Barely seven years old, Vizio may lead this new revolution in the coming decade.