Hulu fans can breathe a temporary breath of relief. On the conference call explaining its acquisition of NBC, Comcast said it doesn’t plan on changing Hulu’s operations.
When asked by analyst if there would be a “Hulu premium” — a version of the site where viewers have to pay to watch shows — the response was that’s “not in the cards.”
In fact, Comcast’s COO Stephen Burke says the “Hulu strategy is smart and appropriate.” There’s lots of broadcast shows on Hulu. Not much cable content.
That’s how it shoud be. Cable content will go to TV Everywhere, Comcast’s authentication initiative. Burke says Hulu is a “complementary product” to TV Everywhere.
That might come as news to the other partners in Hulu. NBC only owns a third of the company. News Corp, another owner, has already started saying it wants Hulu to have a premium channel to charge for certain content.
UPDATE: On a later call, Burke conceded that it wasn’t his call, as NBC is just a minority investor. But, he’s happy with how Hulu is operating now. He didn’t want to say Comcast would be for or against a premium channel.