Mike McGuire

A member of the Gartner Blog Network

Mike McGuire
Research VP
11 years at Gartner
21 years IT industry

Mike McGuire guides digital marketers on best practices for developing strategies. He specializes in how context, community, location and time — combined with a consumer’s purchase history and purchase intent — are changing the relationship between consumers and brands …Read Full Bio

Coverage Areas:

Hulu Plus: You Can Pay?

by Mike McGuire  |  June 30, 2010  |  2 Comments

So now we’ll get an answer to the $9.99 question: will making TV shows available on consumer PCs and portable devices be enough to get those consumers to pay directly for TV shows? Shows they’re probably already getting for free or through their service provider. OK, wait, let’s put a real fine point on this question: Will consumers pay directly for TV shows – they likely get for free somewhere else — that include advertising?

Beats me but the joint venture that is Hulu (owned by News Corp, NBC-Universal and The Walt Disney Company), aims to find out.  Users will pay $9.99/month and get to watch advertising. (On the other hand, cable subscribers and other pay-TV subscribers have been doing that for decades, so maybe this Hulu Plus thingie is just, well, a repackaging of an old idea?)

Maybe, maybe not.  For  $9.99/month and you can get entire seasons worth of current shows as well as back-catalog or shows which left the airwaves years ago. (The existing free product typically has the most recently aired show plus a few trailing episodes.)  Users will also get to watch content in 720p HD on PCs and Macs, iPads,  iPhones, a Samsung Internet-connected TV, Samsung BluRay players, and in the future, Sony PlayStation and Microsoft XBox gaming consoles. (Presumably here will be even more devices in the future).

Hulu CEO Jason Kilar described Hulu Plus as a  “revolutionary ad-supported subscription product,”  in this blog post.

Well, we’ll see if the magic translates into revenue and how the cable world’s “TV Everywhere” efforts stack up against Hulu Plus.

2 Comments »

Category: media business models online video     Tags: ,

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Tom Weiss   June 30, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    The real question for me is whether people will drop cable TV to get TV from Hulu?

    I guess they still need to get the Internet from somewhere, so the cable companies should be able to offer a more attractive package…

  • 2 Mike McGuire   June 30, 2010 at 7:31 pm

    Hey Tom…I don’t think HuluPlus is going to be a driving force in the cable-cutter movement. I do think cable cutters will soon stop inspiring fear in broadcasters and will, instead, inspire a certain amount of fascination. At least I think the smart broadcasters and cable networks/MSOs will focus on cable cutters.
    And if the “customer reviews” of the HuluPlus app Apple’s AppStore are any indication, the future of TV isn’t HuluPlus.