updated 05:55 pm EST, Fri January 29, 2010
Hulu alludes to going beyond desktop
Hulu chief Jason Kilar at a conference this week said his company will make a push into mobile that could include key platforms. Asked about supporting an Apple tablet before the iPad launch, Kilar made it clear that the TV streaming service will "embrace any device" and won't lock itself into supporting any one platform. He adds to GigaOM that Hulu expects mobile to be complimentary to the desktop rather than detrimental.
The comments strongly imply an approach that targets all major platforms, including Android and iPhone OS, is coming in the future. Hulu has so far been limited to the web, in part due to its business model: as it depends on Flash-based video with interstitial ads, the company would need to re-engineer content for media players and smartphones that often don't support Flash or have only a limited implementation.
For Hulu, the easiest platform would be the upcoming Flash 10 for smartphones, which could give Android, Symbian, webOS and Windows Mobile with relatively few changes. With no known plans for native Flash, the iPad and iPhone would need direct access to the video files (as with YouTube) and custom code to insert ads.