AdAge Digital: Hulu announces two million 'Plus' subscribers

By Natan Edelsburg 

In November 2010 Hulu Plus launched with much excitement and skepticism. Would the price tag be too much? Why would there still be advertising if you were a subscriber? Would the networks investing in Hulu get along, long enough to make this last? Today, at AdAge Digital in New York, CEO Jason Kilar is saying yes, Hulu Plus is a success and the decision to keep advertising within the subscription service is allowing them to continue to curate the best content. Hulu still faces many challenges, including figuring out “how to marry its own subscription service with the systems that are being set up by the cable and satellite operators,” as The New York Times reported yesterday.

At AdAge Digital this morning Kilar told the audience that they are also making a big change to their business model. “We’re very happy to announce that as of today, will only charge when ad is streamed to completion.” The good part about this is that when you click the “no” this ad isn’t relevant to me, the advertiser won’t have to pay, on the other hand there’s still no way to DVR through Hulu commercials like we all enjoy via our service providers. He added that, “we have over 350 content partners, now we’re on over 250 million internet connected devices.”

Kilar also discussed the company’s revenue. “We grew 60% last year to $420 million and that they’re, “growing north of that pace this year.” He then announced that, “we have over two million paying Hulu Plus subscribers, we crossed two million in the first quarter.” He finished the big announcement that was the, “fastest video subscription service in the US to two million paid subscribers in history.”

He talked about social TV from the perspective of our future grandchildren. He said, “Our grandchildren will ask, I can’t believe you managed to live with so little,” and that, “I can’t believe you had such a quiet television experience as supposed to one that is alive.” Hulu is definitely on the right path with the development of original content like scripted series Battleground and if they can continue to stay this path, I’ll continue to pay the $8/month.

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