Hulu announced today that its subscribers will finally be able to download content from the service and watch it offline.
The announcement came via an advertiser pitch in New York today, so I’m using third-party sources to document the plans. But here’s how I understand this system will work.
Those on Hulu’s “no commercials” plan won’t see commercials in the downloaded offline content, of course. But those subscribers who pay less for a “with commercials” subscription will download commercials with the content. And they won’t be able to skip past them, of course.
“We will not only be live and on demand, but also untethered and on-the-go anytime, anywhere,” Hulu CEO Randy Freer said. “No Wi-Fi needed.”
So while Hulu is late to the offline game—both Netflix and Amazon have supported this functionality for years—it is the first to support downloads with advertising.
As for timing, offline viewing will happen “in the 2018-2019 season.” So probably late this year, I’d guess.
Hulu had other news to share at its advertising event.
The service now has over 20 million subscribers in the US, up from 17 million in January. And it is introducing a ton of new original series, including Four Weddings and a Funeral, Ramy, and Castle Rock, among many others.
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