During its star-studded NewFronts presentation at Madison Square Garden this morning, Hulu said it was on the verge of hitting 12 million total subscribers — roughly a quarter of Netflix’s 46 million subscribers stateside.
At the same time, CEO Mike Hopkins confirmed reports that Hulu would make a bundle of cable and broadcast channels available early next year for real-time viewing via an as-yet-unnamed service reported to cost $40 per month. This means that, in addition to the reruns it currently offers, Hulu will likely stream channels owned by its owners — 21st Century Fox, The Walt Disney Company, and Comcast. Unlike traditional TV, however, Hopkins describes the forthcoming service as more “intuitive” and “personalized.”
To this end, Hulu announced a new ad tool this morning created alongside interactive advertising company BrighLine that will offer a “highly-engaging and convenient advertising experience that is built exclusively for connected TVs,” according to a press release. Given that 70% of Hulu viewers consume content in their living rooms, the program could include clickable ads on TV screens, for instance, that take users to other web pages.
To provide advertisers with additional data, Hulu will collaborate with Nielsen to measure ad reach across all Hulu-enabled living room devices, including Roku, PlayStation, Xbox, and Apple TV. Hulu is also partnering with research firm Millward Brown to provide marketers with studies, research papers, and stats.
On the content front, Hulu touted several new projects this morning, including the launch of its Documentary Films division with director Ron Howard’s The Beatles: Eight Days A Week. The feature film, about how The Beatles came together, will debut exclusively on the streaming service after its theatrical release in the fall. Hulu has also greenlit season two of the Aaron Paul-starring drama series The Path, as well as season five of The Mindy Project, created by Mindy Kaling. And Hulu will premiere its second election special this year featuring Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog, just in time for the November election.