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1 & Only Hulu General News Thread

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  • [Streaming] 1 & Only Hulu General News Thread

    Widgets Magazine
    A thread for noteworthy news about the site as whole (not really for which series is streaming).



    https://gigaom.com/2014/10/02/hulu-m...-iphone-update | previous Hulu articles from the site
    Hulu makes peace with Apple’s 30 percent cut, enables in-app billing in latest iPhone update

    Summary: Hulu is giving Apple 30 percent of its Hulu Plus subscription fee for new users that sign up through the just-relaunched iPhone app. The company’s business model may help with this significant bounty.

    Hulu’s latest iPhone app update will cost the company dearly — but it may be worth it: Hulu now allows users to sign up for its Hulu Plus subscription service right within the app, which means that Apple takes over the billing relationship for those customers. In return, Apple will get 30 percent, or $2.40, of Hulu’s monthly subscription fee of $8.

    Apple first introduced the 30 percent cut back in early 2011 when it added the ability to bill for in-app subscriptions to iOS. Back then, many publishers were outraged not only about the size of the cut Apple was demanding, but also the fact that the new policy didn’t allow them to use their own billing for new iOS customers.

    Protests against the fee have largely died down over the years, with developers just occasionally grumbling over what some call a “tax”; however, the in-app billing fee has also resulted in many services not using iOS apps for new customer acquisition at all, or awkward workarounds that ask users to visit a website to sign up, and then return to the app.

    Netflix for example isn’t allowing new customers to sign up through its iOS apps. Spotify on the other hand makes use of in-app billing, but ends up handing down the extra costs to consumers, charging them up to $13 per month for a subscription that would only cost $10 if they had signed up on the web. Hulu isn’t doing either, but is instead charging new iOS customers the same rate as its other subscribers, effectively subsidizing these new subscriptions, to the tune of $28.80 per iOS subscriber per year.

    To understand why Hulu is doing this, it’s worth considering two things: The importance of mobile for online video and Hulu’s unique business model. It’s no secret that mobile video viewing is growing rapidly, and Hulu is seeing this starting to affect its subscribers as well. The video service started out with close to no traction in mobile, and concentrated the first few years on building out its living room platforms. But more recently, it has seen significant mobile growth, to the point where 20 percent of Hulu’s video views now come from mobile.

    https://gigaom2.files.wordpress.com/...ribers2013.jpg

    Hulu has been growing its number of paying subscribers, but advertising is playing an important role for the company as well. (Image source: Hulu)

    The other thing to remember is that Hulu makes a lot of money with ads, and plenty of those ads are shown to paying subscribers. So even if the company makes less money from new iPhone subscribers, it may be able to make some of it back by showing these subscribers advertising. At the same time, Hulu also uses ads to pay for and make money with free videos, which are in turn used to get people hooked and eventually convert them into paying subscribers. That’s been working well on the web for years, and the company is now looking to also use it on mobile as well.

    Hulu’s mobile apps have traditionally only been for paying subscribers, but the company recently released an updated Android app that also offers users without a subscription access to select clips and full-length episodes in an attempt to get them to sign up for more. Hulu’s new iPhone app doesn’t include free content just yet, but the in-app billing reduces an important roadblock to bring this kind of upsell to iOS devices as well.

    What the app does offer, aside from in-app billing, is a complete visual refresh that trades horizontal rows of content that dominate the previous version for a more vertical, mobile-friendly approach. The app now also comes with two sidebars, one for general navigation and one as a kind of deck of all the shows you watch, redesigned show pages and more contextual approach to search. Check out some screenshots of the new app below: < see slideshow @ bottom of article >

  • #2
    Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

    http://nypost.com/2014/10/08/hulu-ce...-on-hulu-plus/
    Hulu CEO mulls cutting number of ads running on Hulu Plus

    Hulu is looking to lighten its ad load.

    CEO Mike Hopkins, who took the helm in May, is considering cutting back the number of ads that appear on Hulu Plus, the $7.99-a-month paid tier of the online streaming service, The Post has learned.

    While no decision has been made, an executive close to the company said Hulu and its media partners are “always looking at a variety of ways to create the best possible experience for our viewers and advertisers including reducing the ad load.”

    Hulu, owned by big media backers 21st Century Fox, Disney and Comcast, has to walk a fine line between bringing in new subscribers and boosting ad revenue.

    Concerned that Hulu was starting to mirror the heavy ad loads on broadcast television at the expense of the user experience, some ad execs cheered the possibility of a cutback.

    “After Facebook went public, they had in-stream video and it suffocated the users and they pulled back,” said Steve Minichini, chief digital officer at ad agency Assembly, told The Post. “If what we’re hearing is correct — that Hulu is pulling back — I would welcome that.”

    Hulu showed users an average of 82.3 ads a month, compared with YouTube and other Google-owned sites, which showed an average of 32.3 ads per viewer, according to comScore data from December 2013.

    “The frequency [of ads per viewer] is very high, but you have to remember the average Hulu viewer is very engaged and they spend a lot of time there,” one source added.

    The giant shift of viewers to mobile devices could be one reason Hulu is mulling the move.

    “We are counseling our clients to move between 10 percent to 25 percent of TV dollars to online video, depending on the target audience,” Omnicom Media Group CEO Daryl Simm told WSJ.com, adding that sites like Hulu would be the big beneficiaries.

    A Hulu rep declined comment.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

      ^ Personally, I think if you're paying for the service, there should be no ads at all, but I've probably been spoiled by Crunchyroll. I think Hulu would get more people on plus if there were no ads at all, but maybe that's just me.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

        I remember marathoning Blue Sub No. 6 on Hulu. All 4 eps - 56 ads. This is WITH Hulu+. It's really not much different from regular TV. The paid service needs to be like Netflix. NO ADS. Isn't that the point of paying for it anyway?
        Avatar: Ryoga Hibiki from Ranma 1/2

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

          Like I've said before get rid of the ads, and I have no problem paying 8.99 or 9.99 per month for it

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

            Originally posted by Art-chan View Post
            ^ Personally, I think if you're paying for the service, there should be no ads at all, but I've probably been spoiled by Crunchyroll. I think Hulu would get more people on plus if there were no ads at all, but maybe that's just me.
            Originally posted by PurpleWarrior13 View Post
            I remember marathoning Blue Sub No. 6 on Hulu. All 4 eps - 56 ads. This is WITH Hulu+. It's really not much different from regular TV. The paid service needs to be like Netflix. NO ADS. Isn't that the point of paying for it anyway?
            This always comes up. First up, with Crunchyroll, it's more the accident of a foreign market not yet being taken advantage of by Japanese companies. You have to realize that there is no option like CR in Japan. There is no service that streams day and date anime from multiple publishers and networks all in one place (or even two as we do with Funi included); not even next day, like Hulu. (There is a Hulu Japan, but it still doesn't feature much anime.) We get a better experience--for $6.95 a month--than Japanese fans do, who still have to keep track of and record multiple series across multiple networks. So, yeah, we've been really spoiled by Crunchyroll--and because it's secondary market foreign licensed entertainment, it doesn't really compare with what Hulu does domestically.

            Hulu is also not Netflix. Netflix, especially for TV shows which is Hulu's big item, is getting things months after a series has completed. Hulu, you're getting on-demand TV episodes the very next day. It's not the same kind of streaming service as far as the main business goes.* It's also, while growing, finally, at a good pace, a smaller base of users than Netflix. Hulu+ is really not a bad deal (unless you like a lot of CBS shows, which is not part of the partnership). 2-3 ads running 2-3 minutes if that four or five times an hour program--those complaining really need to remember broadcast TV, which is often twice that for its breaks. Of course, if capable (and another $10 a month to your cable/satellite company, or Tivo) you can DVR a show or start late, and manage to skip commercials altogether. (Competing against or parallel with Hulu, Comcast On Demand, and network websites, have as many ads as a live airing.)

            *Where I do agree Hulu+ should transition away from ads is for any and all catalog material on the service. Next day shows, during their season run? I can live with it. Previous seasons or especially movies? Yeah, that is an annoyance; if I see something I like there I'll check NF instead if it's possible. And I would pay even a couple bucks more to see that happen. I may be an exception, but I am a cord-cutter so it's all still somewhat of a bargain: I'd pay almost as much as I do for Netflix now, with streaming and one disc unlimited, say at about $16 a month, for completely ad-free Hulu.

            But, hell, I'll welcome fewer ads in whatever case, especially as a sign of the service's increasing fortune.

            EDIT: Also, what I'm talking about here is Hulu's bread and butter--domestic American TV, which is just expensive to run on a next-day basis. For people looking to Hulu+ primarily from an anime focus, yes, compared to ad-free CR at the same price, but with a number of the same shows, it doesn't seem as rosy. One thing to note, however, is that Hulu+ is where all of Funi's streams also go, and last season, at least two of them went day and date, whereas all of them normally air a week behind. If Hulu+, even with ads, becomes a true alternative to Funi's paid program at the same price, I'd say that's a hell of deal with everything else they do thrown in.
            Last edited by bctaris; 10-08-2014, 11:55 PM.
            Avatar: Tsumugi, Sweetness & Lightning
            Moderation: General Anime; English Track; Movie; TV | TFP Forum Rules
            Please Support The Fandom Post

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

              Originally posted by Art-chan View Post
              ^ Personally, I think if you're paying for the service, there should be no ads at all, but I've probably been spoiled by Crunchyroll. I think Hulu would get more people on plus if there were no ads at all, but maybe that's just me.
              Well, the thing about Hulu is that streaming rights for the content that they have is a whole lot more expensive than anime streaming rights that CR and Funimation have. So there is that to think about as I remember Hulu's FAQ saying. At the very least, having a lighter ad load for subscribers is a huge improvement much like how Neon Alley used to operate when it was a paid service. It used to be that there were three ad breaks with two ads loaded, and now each break has increased to four or five, but at the very least there are no more ads that last longer than 30 seconds.
              MyAnimeList | Avatar: Rimuru, That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime
              Watching: Hero Mask, Granblue Fantasy, Tales of Zestiria, Aria, DB Super, Toonami Stuff
              Simulcasts: BNF, TGL-R, GKY, SAO-3, TOA-I3, FTL-3, DDK, GSY, IRD, SBY, TSL, CQK, BIY, RRD, UZM, KTF, JUL, S4G, MBZ, MVN, XYS, ZLS, GSH, JSY
              The only thing better than anime is sports. Get hit hard and you got JACKED UP! Or else it's a C'mon Man!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                I have Hulu Plus, and most breaks seem to have 1-2 commercials. Very rarely there are three. You also sometimes get the option of watching a longer commercial break, movie, or game promo at the start of a program with no additional breaks during the show. It's not nearly as bad as most TV and cable networks, and it's still a much better value than paying for cable, which also has commercials. Also, I love the fact that, as of present, it has no local political advertising, and you can somewhat customize your ad experience. Children's shows are completely commercial free, as I found out when I watched the old Strawberry shortcake specials.

                As others have pointed out, Hulu is a different service than Netflix or Amazon Prime, and offers much newer content in most cases. Unfortunately, their movie selection is almost identical to Netflix and Amazon most of the time. I think for what it offers, even with commercials, that $7.99 is a fair price. However, I think adding a third, higher cost tier without commercials, for say $9.99 a month might be an attractive option for some people, and one that I would consider.

                But if I can keep paying my current fee and get less commercials, I'm all for it, especially as Hulu seems to repeat the same add more often than television networks.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                  http://variety.com/2015/digital/news...ort-1201542362
                  Hulu May Offer Ad-Free Subscription Option: Report

                  Subscription VOD service Hulu is considering adding a more expensive subscription option sans commercials, the Wall Street Journal reported late Thursday.

                  In addition to maintaining its current $7.99 version with ads, Hulu would make a second version available for a price in the neighborhood of $12-14. While that price point would be more expensive than most SVOD options in the U.S. marketplace, the logic behind the move is that would avoid siphoning away the 9 million subscribers already paying for the current version.

                  But the new offering could help Hulu better compete with its biggest rivals, Netflix and Amazon Prime, which have both always been without ads. Hulu has been criticized for requiring for subs to pay but sit through ads; on the other hand, the dual revenue stream has drawn respect within the media industry.

                  Hulu did not respond to inquiry for comment.
                  http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/new...ad-free-809395
                  Hulu Looking to Offer Ad-Free Option (Report)

                  According to the Wall Street Journal, the service could launch as early as fall 2015.

                  Hulu may offer an ad-free option to subscribers for an increased price, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday evening.

                  In an effort to compete with rival streaming service Netflix, the web content provider could allow Hulu users the option of paying $12 to $14 a month for the ad-free service, doubling the current $7.99 premium subscription.

                  Competitor video streaming companies Amazon Prime Instant Video and Netflix are each ad-free services.

                  According to the WSJ, the new Hulu project's code name is "NOAH," which stands for "No Ads Hulu" and could be available to subscribers as early as fall 2015.

                  A Hulu representative did not immediately respond to The Hollywood Reporter's request for comment.
                  Last edited by WTK; 07-17-2015, 12:56 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                    http://blog.hulu.com/2015/08/25/hulu...ammatic-buying
                    Hulu Offers Smarter Advertising with Programmatic Buying
                    August 25th, 2015 by Editor

                    Hulu announced today that it will launch the next evolution in its sales process with a new programmatic solution for marketers this fall. This makes Hulu’s premium video inventory across all platforms including desktop, mobile and connected TV’s in the living room available in programmatic offering for the first time. By combining media automation with data-informed targeting, Hulu is leading the way to deliver the right advertisement to the right person at the right time.

                    With the Oracle Data Management Platform (DMP), part of the Oracle Marketing Cloud, and a private marketplace, powered by LiveRail, Hulu will create new opportunities for advertisers with an automated, seamless, data-driven process. By partnering with these industry leaders, Hulu will be able to deliver marketers strong results, deep targeting, real-time adjustments and give them more control over their campaigns.

                    “The marketplace has shown that data is overwhelmingly the new currency,” said Peter Naylor, SVP of Advertising, Hulu. “With this new offering, Hulu is at the forefront of defining ‘programmatic’ for the digital video ecosystem and will increase efficiency and ROI for marketers.”

                    Oracle is a leader in the data-driven marketplace, the Oracle DMP is enabling Hulu to increase reach, scale and efficiency for marketers by combining both first party and third party data. With the Oracle DMP, marketers are able to personalize their advertising campaigns on Hulu with more rich information about their target audiences to deliver even stronger campaign results. Hulu selected the Oracle DMP in May 2015.

                    LiveRail’s Video Private Exchange (VPX) empowers Hulu to execute direct deals with advertisers programmatically increasing efficiency. Hulu will be able to use LiveRail’s granular level controls to target campaigns with the ability to make real-time decisions on the value of individual impressions, driving campaign effectiveness and results for advertisers and increasing the relevance of ads for their viewers.

                    “Hulu’s investment in the future of data-driven technology with its new programmatic solution reinforces the company’s continued commitment to the advertising community and its viewers,” said Vin Paolozzi, SVP of Marketplace Development & Investment for MAGNA GLOBAL. “We look forward to working with Hulu and being a part of this critical shift in the future of advertising and providing better value and insights to our clients.”

                    “We are thrilled that Hulu has chosen to take a major step to develop solutions that address head-on newly emerging challenges facing advertisers today,” said Dani Benowitz, EVP and Managing Partner of Integrated Investments for UM. “Their new programmatic solution will help us better guide our clients in establishing more effective campaigns that are sure to deliver enhanced results.”

                    With the new programmatic solution Hulu will be able to serve more relevant ads to each viewer. For advertisers, Hulu has a lighter commercial load than traditional television, resulting in higher brand recall. Ads on Hulu are unskippable, and marketers are only charged for ads viewed to 100 percent completion. Hulu has a much younger audience than traditional broadcast or cable television. Hulu also delivers industry-leading viewability metrics outperforming the industry benchmark by 80%.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                      http://blog.hulu.com/2015/09/02/hulu...-free-viewing/
                      HULU ADDS COMMERCIAL-FREE VIEWING

                      SANTA MONICA, Calif., (September 2, 2015) – Today Hulu is offering a commercial-free option to subscribers. Viewers now have the choice to watch Hulu commercial free for $11.99 per month or with limited commercials for $7.99 per month. Current Hulu subscribers will maintain their existing subscription, but will have the choice to switch to the commercial-free option at any time for an additional $4 per month. For viewers who choose to watch content with limited commercials, Hulu will continue to show fewer commercials than scheduled television.

                      “At Hulu, we pride ourselves on listening to our customers and giving them the best possible experience,” said Mike Hopkins, CEO, Hulu. “Many of our customers have asked us for a commercial free option, and so today we are excited to introduce just that. Providing more choice for consumers is fundamental to the Hulu experience, in addition to an array of choices in content and devices, our customers can now choose to watch with or without commercials.”

                      Over the last year Hulu has aggressively expanded its content lineup. Most recently, Hulu announced a landmark, multi-year agreement with EPIX that will bring premium and hit films from Lionsgate, MGM and Paramount to Hulu for the first time. Hulu also signed groundbreaking licensing deals with networks including AMC, FX and Turner, and acquired the exclusive subscription streaming rights to full libraries of hit broadcast and cable shows including Seinfeld, Empire, Fargo, South Park, CSI, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Nashville, Deadliest Catch, The Last Ship and more. Earlier this year, Hulu also became the only subscription video on-demand service to offer the SHOWTIME® premium service as an add-on directly to subscribers for an additional $8.99 per month.

                      In addition, Hulu has made a strong investment in its original programming and has greenlit an exciting slate of originals, including the event series 11/22/63 from Stephen King and J.J. Abrams starring James Franco; comedy series Difficult People produced by Amy Poehler with stars Julie Klausner and Billy Eichner; Casual, a comedy series from Oscar®-nominated Director Jason Reitman; The Way (wt), a drama series starring Aaron Paul and Michelle Monaghan from Jason Katims; the first long-form project from Freddie Wong and the RocketJump team; and season four of the critically-acclaimed comedy The Mindy Project, starring Mindy Kaling.

                      For viewers who choose the limited commercials viewing option, Hulu remains dedicated to providing a seamless and relevant ad experience by connecting viewers with the right advertisers. Most recently, Hulu announced strong investment in advertising technology with its programmatic offering to deliver the right ad to the right user at the right time.

                      Since its launch in 2008, Hulu has been at the forefront of entertainment and technology. In 2015, the company announced it had grown to nearly 9 million US subscribers, an overall 50% growth year over year.

                      For more information visit http://hulu.com/nocommercials

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                        It's about time an ad-free version came up!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                          It's about time that an ad-free option is available. It's one thing to keep the costs down by having limited ads, but it's always nice to have options.
                          MyAnimeList | Avatar: Rimuru, That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime
                          Watching: Hero Mask, Granblue Fantasy, Tales of Zestiria, Aria, DB Super, Toonami Stuff
                          Simulcasts: BNF, TGL-R, GKY, SAO-3, TOA-I3, FTL-3, DDK, GSY, IRD, SBY, TSL, CQK, BIY, RRD, UZM, KTF, JUL, S4G, MBZ, MVN, XYS, ZLS, GSH, JSY
                          The only thing better than anime is sports. Get hit hard and you got JACKED UP! Or else it's a C'mon Man!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                            As the others said, it's about time. I'll probably wait until next week to upgrade, but upgrade I shall. Also, I was planning on getting a FUNi sub-pass later this year, but with this happening, I guess I won't bother with that now. Money-wise, it will cost a tiny bit more upgrading Hulu than getting myself a 12 month FUNi sub-pass (roughly $12 difference), but since I'm interested in more than just anime, I think Hulu will be the better deal in the long run.
                            What I've Been Watching ~ DVD Collection

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: 1 &amp; Only Hulu General News Thread

                              http://variety.com/2015/digital/news...ake-1201639424
                              Hulu Looking to Sell Stake to Time Warner: Report

                              Deal would value Internet TV site at $5 billion to $6 billion: WSJ report

                              Hulu is in talks with Time Warner about selling a stake in the company, in a deal that would value the streaming-video provider at more than $5 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported.

                              The deal would add Time Warner to Hulu’s media-conglomerate ownership. Currently, Hulu is owned by 21st Century Fox, Disney and Comcast’s NBCUniversal. If Time Warner acquired a stake in Hulu, each company would own 25%.

                              Time Warner declined to comment. Reps for Hulu did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

                              Hulu’s owners previously tried twice to sell the joint venture, most recently two years ago. After a months-long sales process and receiving multiple bids, in July 2013 Fox, NBCU and Disney jointly announced that they would maintain their respective ownership positions in Hulu and together provide a cash infusion of $750 million.

                              Before the three congloms called off the sale, the short list of bidders included DirecTV, a joint offer from AT&T and Chernin Group, and Time Warner Cable.

                              Over the past two years, Hulu has been more aggressively competing for exclusive subscription VOD rights while at the same time boosting its slate of originals. The company also recently introduced a commercial-free SVOD plan for $11.99 per month, in addition to its $7.99 monthly service that includes limited ads.

                              A new cash infusion from Time Warner could give Hulu more firepower to take on chief rival Netflix. Execs at some large media companies have indicated that they’ll pull back on SVOD licensing deals overall, in order to increasingly monetize their content on their own services. In comparison to Netflix or Amazon, Hulu is seen as being more aligned with the strategic priorities of the major conglomerates.

                              On Time Warner’s third-quarter 2015 earnings call this month, CEO Jeff Bewkes told analysts that the company is rethinking its approach to subscription VOD deals.

                              “We’re evaluating whether to retain our rights for a longer period of time and forego or delay certain content licensing,” he said. “This would effectively push the (SVOD) window to a multiyear period more consistent with traditional syndication.”

                              Comment

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