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Thursday, 13 March 2008 06:32

Hulu online video service opens

Written by David Stellmack

Image

18 months of private beta testing


Many people might want to mark today’s date on their calendar as the day that the first assault in online legal video streaming distribution across the Internet will attempt to stake its claim. The new online video service, which is called “Hulu” that is a joint venture between NBC-Universal and Fox, goes live today.

The Hulu service has over $100 million in venture capital backing, it was in private Beta testing for the last 18 months, and believe it or not, it cost a whopping $15 million to develop. Hulu is a streaming service, which means that you have to be connected to the Internet to video the content that Hulu offers.

Right now, you are unable to download the content using the Hulu service and take it with you. It is not really known if digital distribution or downloading will be part of the service at some point in the future. As with any type of video service, content is the key to driving the success of it. In this area Hulu appears to have done pretty well, as it has content from NBC-Universal and Fox, of course, but in addition it has created partnerships with major players, including Sony, Warner Brothers, Lionsgate, and MGM.

The Hulu service will offer content such as TV shows, movies, and sports from the NBA and NHL. The service is free, but the catch is that content is advertiser supported, meaning that you are going to be subjected to commercials or advertising while watching content from Hulu. Some of the ads may appear at the bottom of the picture, for example. The quality is good, the streaming is fast and the Web interface used to play the video is very easy to use.

If you can put up with the ads, it is worth a look and, after all, free is free.

Check out Hulu by clicking here.

Last modified on Thursday, 13 March 2008 07:53

David Stellmack

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