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Hulu ‘plans cable-style OTT service’

hulugrab_1Hulu is reportedly developing a cable TV-style subscription service that will allow users to watch television channels over the web.

According to a Wall Street Journal report, the US streaming service aims to launch the new offering in the first quarter of 2017, broadening its business model from purely on-demand online content.

Customers will not need to be existing Hulu subscribers to sign up to the as-yet-unnamed new service, which is expected to cost in the region of US$40 per-month and will likely include cloud DVR-capabilities and serve targeted advertising, said the report.

Disney-owned networks ABC, ESPN and Disney Channel are expected to be available on the new service, as are Fox News, FX and Fox’s sports channels. However, NBCU hasn’t yet agreed to licence its channels to the service, according to the WSJ.

Disney-ABC Television Group, Fox Broadcasting Company and NBCUniversal Television Group jointly own Hulu.

Hulu’s current on-demand streaming service offers hundreds of thousands of hours of TV programming and movies to subscribers with limited commercials for US$7.99 per month or with no commercials for US$11.99 per month.

Hulu today claims nearly nine million subscribers, more than 500 content partners and over 2,000 advertising partners.