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Report: Hulu Tops 450K Live TV Subscribers

Well, it looks like Hulu’s live TV streaming service is off to a great start according to CNBC who reports that Hulu now has 450,000+ live TV subscribers. This all comes after Hulu announced they have topped 17 million total subscribers their on-demand service.

According to CNBC citing people familiar with the situation said Hulu has signed up around 450,000 live TV subscribers since it launched back in May 2017. That puts Hulu close to the last reported PlayStation Vue numbers of about 400,000. (The PlayStation Vue numbers are over 6 months old and again came from sources familiar with the situation.)

DIRECTV NOW recently hit their one year anniversary by hitting 1 million live TV subscribers putting them well ahead of many of their competitors but still well behind Sling TV. According to reports Sling TV recently topped 2 million subscribers on the high end well others say Sling TV has about 1.68 million on the low end. (Sling TV does not disclose subscriber numbers.) There is a growing list of live TV streaming services including fuboTV who recently announced they have topped 100,000 subscribers.

Hulu was not the only live TV streaming service to launch in 2017 as YouTube TV, Comcast Instant TV, Spectrum Streaming, Philo and others all launched a live TV streaming service in 2017.

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21 Responses to Report: Hulu Tops 450K Live TV Subscribers

  1. Avatar
    Darnell January 22, 2018 at 12:18 pm #

    But will this help Hulu get more of the locals added? Been with Hulu Live TV since the first beta was on Fire TV, now using Roku for it. But since day 1, the slow local addition has been a big concern. I know, each local has it’s own structure that has to agree to the deal and all of that. But my point, is can this help bring leverage? We need those locals to get on board :thumbsup:

    • Avatar
      Kevin Jordan January 22, 2018 at 12:58 pm #

      Oddly Hulu is only one of two services that has all my locals now (DirecTV Now being the other). YouTube TV and Playstation Vue dropped my Fox after having a dispute with Tribune. Aside from buffering issues and a somewhat confusing layout (especially for my parents now that I talked them into dropping Spectrum TV and going with that) which hopefully will be fixed in the coming months, Hulu is a fairly good live TV service. Of course I’d like if they could get AMC added to their lineup though.

    • Avatar
      Joe in Virginia January 22, 2018 at 1:11 pm #

      I have had the exact opposite with Hulu. Since I signed up with them three months ago, they have added 3 of the 4 local channels. The only one I’m missing is NBC. I want a live streaming service for sports, news, and locals and Hulu is the best match for that.

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      Rocksleeper January 22, 2018 at 1:57 pm #

      I don’t see how subscriber base would matter. Local affiliates only broadcast to LOCAL areas. So they don’t really care about national subscribers.

      In the past, it was the affiliates that negotiated with cable companies. Streaming is different. The networks made deals with the streaming services and told the affiliates they could “opt-in” if they like. The affiliates are wary of this.. And not sure they are getting the best deal out of it. It really is a 3-way negotiation for each affiliate. The affiliate negotiates with the network to see how much money they can get from them through their deal with the streaming service.Then they negotiate with the streaming service on retransmission fees. If the network is willing to share more money with the affiliate, then they don’t have to negotiate higher with the streaming service and opt-in quicker. In short, If the price is right, they opt in.

      NATIONAL subscribers numbers have little to do with these negotiations.

      • Avatar
        Darnell January 22, 2018 at 3:11 pm #

        Thank you for your response. But the whole YELLING (LARGE CAPS) is totally unnecessary.

        • Avatar
          Rocksleeper January 22, 2018 at 3:32 pm #

          It was used to emphasize certain words, nothing more. If I was typing on my PC, I would have used italics instead.

          • Avatar
            Darnell January 22, 2018 at 3:46 pm #

            Please refrain from all caps, no matter the keyboard, unless intending to yell. Thank you again.

  2. Avatar
    SanityChecker January 22, 2018 at 12:55 pm #

    Would think once YouTubeTV hits Roku and more devices this year it will pass Hulu. The interface and DVR functions are much better than other services. YTTV channel count is getting better too.

    • Avatar
      Kevin Jordan January 22, 2018 at 1:00 pm #

      I’d like to see YouTube TV get the Turner stations added in. That plus my local Fox which it dropped. Their DVR also needs work so you can only record new airings of a show as opposed to all old reruns and reshowings of new episodes.

      • Avatar
        SanityChecker January 22, 2018 at 1:21 pm #

        Would think over time YTTV adds more channels but probably not at $35 pricepoint. My guess the OTT LiveTV services that dominate will be the ones that can cross-reference and cross-market ecosystems… so Google/YTTV, ATT/DTVN and if Amazon eventually decides to get into live TV.

      • Avatar
        Joe in Virginia January 22, 2018 at 1:59 pm #

        The fact that you can’t fast forward through DVR’d shows make it a non-starter for me.

  3. Avatar
    Malignar January 22, 2018 at 1:11 pm #

    I’m shocked that they have that many subscribers with such a poor UI.

    • Avatar
      Rocksleeper January 22, 2018 at 2:10 pm #

      I think it is more with the deal you get bundling hulu with live. For those already paying for Hulu, getting live added on actually makes it a cheap option.

      No 60 fps for sport channels (along with bad interface) was the deal breakers for me though.

    • Avatar
      Iphart January 22, 2018 at 9:25 pm #

      Fake numbers, do not believe it. Maybe for their regular HULU, not for the live one.
      I don’t believe the #’s for YouTube tv either with so many major channels missing there.

  4. Avatar
    Barbara R January 22, 2018 at 1:46 pm #

    I do think that Play Station should change their name — maybe just to Vue. It’s weird, but I wouldn’t want to sign up for something called “Play Station.” I wouldn’t even look into it. And it’s confusing because it sounds as though you need to own a Play Station, even though I know you don’t.

    • Avatar
      Mike Thaler January 22, 2018 at 3:38 pm #

      Should be called “SONY Vue” – since Sony has a very recognizable name.

    • Avatar
      chenriii January 23, 2018 at 11:38 am #

      Amen to the name change. The fact is that Vue subscriptions are lagging significantly behind the other services, even though Vue’s quality and features are fully competitive, in some ways better, than any of the others. And the reason is that stupid name.

  5. Avatar
    Infensus January 22, 2018 at 3:22 pm #

    I don’t understand who these people are that use such an expensive system. $40 for a service with no FF of commercials. By the time you get to no commercial TV/VOD you are in around $60.

    Getting Vue or DirecTV Now (yes I know the DVR is in beta) base packages with a standard Hulu subscription would be less expensive.

  6. Avatar
    SS January 22, 2018 at 5:33 pm #

    If YouTube TV doesn’t go nationwide soon and add support for Apple TV and Roku, they’re going to lose a lot of potential customers for a stupid reason. They have a great app but they could lose the game if they don’t put effort to reach more people.

    They’re so focused on giving at least 3-4 live locals that they’re forgetting that most people are okay with just on demand versions for broadcast shows.

  7. Avatar
    dem816 January 23, 2018 at 7:56 am #

    No guide was a Hulu Live TV deal-breaker for us. Sony Vue is working great for us but will keep an eye-on the ever-changing landscape. Exciting times for cord cutters.

    • Avatar
      chenriii January 23, 2018 at 11:37 am #

      I’m in exactly the same place as you are. I’m a Vue subscriber, generally happy, but if Hulu Live TV were to offer proper DVR storage at a reasonable price (right now it’s 50 hours for its base service of 39.99, which is a pathetic bad joke, and 200 hours for $55 a month, which is again an insult), or if DirecTV Now were to offer a meaningful DVR service rather than its current beta, which apparently is only 50 hours, I would be O.K. with switching. Consumers have so much power now as compared to the bad old days when all we had were the legacy subscription services like Time Warner, Comcast, Cox, Direct TV, Dish, etc. etc.