Hulu has signed the NBCUniversal cable networks to join its live streaming service which is currently in beta testing. When Hulu actually launches depends on how well the testing goes, but as it stands now, various networks including CBS, Disney, Fox and Time Warner have been part of the original lineup.
The interesting part of the NBCUniversal deal is that the NBC Television Network is not included. So NBC is missing among the broadcast networks. ABC, CBS and Fox are already on Hulu.
So as far as sports is concerned, there will be plenty of networks for fans to choose from including their main cable networks and regional sports networrks. And there will be sports content from the broadcast networks as well. But until NBC is brought in, it leaves a big hole until the network is brought on board.
A&E Networks including A&E, History, Lifetime and others recently came to an agreement to join Hulu’s live over the top service. But Hulu has not been able to lure Viacom’s networks (Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, etc.) to the service and likely won’t have the networks during the official launch.
Hulu has been in operation since 2007 and is a joint venture involving Disney, Fox and NBC as equal partners and Time Warner’s Turner Broadcasting as a minority partner.
Hulu’s live over the top service is expected to cost $40 per month and will include at least 40 channels, cloud DVR and access to Hulu’s on-demand library.
While NBC and the Viacom networks are not on the service for now, Hulu’s offering is quite strong, but if it can bring NBC into the fold, it would have all of the broadcast networks and stand out from its streaming competitors, DirecTV Now, PlayStation Vue and YouTube TV.