Hulu and NBCUniversal ink expansive agreement to bring top channels to Hulu’s upcoming live TV streaming service

Hulu and NBCUniversal have reached a comprehensive, new distribution agreement that will bring NBC- and Telemundo-owned Television Stations and portfolio of leading cable networks to Hulu’s upcoming new live TV streaming service when it launches this Spring.

The deal will provide live and on-demand streaming access to networks including NBC, Telemundo, USA, Syfy, Bravo, E!, MSNBC, CNBC, NBCSN and more, bringing the total number of channels in Hulu’s live TV service to more than 50. The agreement also includes a framework for licensing the NBC and Telemundo broadcast affiliates for carriage on Hulu’s new service.

“NBC Universal is home to many of today’s leading sports, news, entertainment and lifestyle networks – brands that not only draw large audiences but also drive pop culture,” said Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins in a statement. “With this agreement in place, Hulu will soon provide an affordable, complete live TV package that includes all four major broadcast networks, the top-rated cable news channels, a massive sports offering and our deep existing premium streaming library for under $40.”

“We’re pleased to partner with Hulu to make NBCUniversal’s leading portfolio of entertainment, news and sports networks available on this new service,” stated Matt Bond, Chairman NBCUniversal Content Distribution, in a statement. “Growing our audiences is an important priority and this partnership will help bring our networks to new customers.”

As one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies, NBCUniversal’s suite of networks includes NBC, with broadcast hits such as This Is Us, Blindspot and The Voice, as well as late night series The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Saturday Night Live and Late Night with Seth Meyers; leading cable networks like USA — home of the critically acclaimed cable drama Mr. Robot — Syfy, Bravo and E!; top-rated news programming from NBC’s The Today Show and Dateline, to live, breaking coverage from MSNBC and CNBC news networks; leading American Spanish-language network Telemundo; kids programming from Sprout; and sports programming like Sunday Night Football and the Olympics and networks including NBCSN, Golf Channel and NBC Sports Regional Networks in Chicago, Philadelphia, New England, Mid-Atlantic, Bay Area, California and Northwest.

NBCUniversal’s portfolio of networks adds to a growing list of more than 50 popular channels that will all be offered through Hulu’s new live TV service at launch. The deal follows Hulu’s recently announced agreement with A+E Networks, as well as its agreements with 21st Century Fox, The Walt Disney Company, Turner Networks and CBS Corporation.

In addition to the company’s current ad-supported and ad-free subscription video on demand products, Hulu’s new service will offer viewers the most valuable pay-TV option on the market in a groundbreaking, new user experience for under $40 per month. With no set-up costs or installation, only Hulu will bring together live and on demand channels, original series and films, and premium library TV shows and movies, all in one place, across living room and mobile devices.

Source: Hulu

Eddy Cue
Eddy Cue
MacDailyNews Take: Meanwhile, Apple’s Eddy Cue combs Cupertino-area stationery stores in a fruitless search for ink while mumbling Planet of the Apps, Planet of the Apps, Planet of the Apps

It’s quite possible that without Steve Jobs’ help, Eddy Cue couldn’t get ink in a stationery store.MacDailyNews, November 5, 2015

We’re embarrassed for Apple, but, don’t forget what Tim Cook told us last fall, “And now, with the TV app, there’s really no reason to watch TV anywhere else.”


Thanks for the laugh, Tim! — MacDailyNews, February 16, 2017

One more time: Which Apple VP is in charge of Apple TV among other chronically glitch-prone services that are uniformly saddled with Microsoftian UIs?

Therein Apple’s problem lies.

A jovial, fun-loving nature wrapped in unbuttoned shirts is no substitute for execution, quality, taste, and signed contracts, Tim.

Beloved by all, yet failing the company. It’s a conundrum that needs to be solved.MacDailyNews, November 3, 2016

YouTube to unveil virtual cable bundle for $30 to $40 a month – February 28, 2017
Stalled talks with Ron Howard highlight Apple’s content confusion – February 16, 2017
Apple vowed to revolutionize television; currently prepping an unremarkable 4K Apple TV instead – February 16, 2017
Apple TV: Still not ready for prime time – February 15, 2017
Apple hires Amazon’s Fire TV head to run Apple TV business – February 8, 2017
Apple’s new TV app shows just how painfully behind Apple is – December 14, 2016
Are you ready for 4K TV? Apple TV isn’t. – November 28, 2016
Apple has no idea what they’re doing in the TV space, and it’s embarrassing – November 3, 2016
Hulu inks deals with Fox and Disney, adding ESPN, Fox News and more to forthcoming live service – November 1, 2016
Apple’s Eddy Cue: Nope, we don’t want to be Netflix – October 20, 2016
Google signs up CBS for planned web TV service to debut in early 2017; close to deal with 21st Century Fox – October 20, 2016
Apple’s Eddy Cue: Nope, we don’t want to be Netflix – October 20, 2016
Apple’s Eddy Cue alienated cable providers and networks with an assertive negotiating style – report – July 28, 2016
Here comes á la carte programming – without Apple – July 13, 2016
Apple TV 4 is a beta product and, if you bought one, you’re an unpaid beta tester – November 5, 2015


  1. Yet another video streaming company gains Live TV access. 😛 Totally convinced the Apple privacy policy is the steel wall making deals so difficult for them.

  2. What the article omits is how much profit HULU is going to make. If their margin is 10%, it hardly fits in with Apple’s business plan that MDN is always crowing about. MDN can’t have it both ways: ballyhooing Apple’s fantastic profitability and criticizing a deal that would likely destroy that profitability if consummated at the level HULU is likely realizing.

    1. Both Xennex and scopie are very likely spot on. Apple’s stance on privacy and profitability are probably major roadblocks here.
      However… with $200 Billion in the bank, you’d think Apple would consider funding a loss-leader.
      But these subscriptions and on-demand-streaming deals will provide the networks with a bonanza of user-data, WAY more than their traditional OTA programing or even their traditional cable deals, and I’m guessing that might be a HUGE sticking point in the negotiations.
      Apple has no leverage with their hardware in this arena, and given the glacial pace of their AppleTV development effort, they won’t have leverage anytime soon.

    2. If Apple wasn’t trying so hard and failing with the Apple TV and related media services for it, I don’t think MDN would care to crow so much.

  3. No streaming service that offers a few of the best channels along with a giant load of crap is going to succeed. That’s what we have now with cable tv! Nor can streaming tv succeed if viewers have to subscribe to a dozen different services to get all their favorite channels. The cost would end up being higher than cable tv already is! Everybody who has a dog in this fight is trying to give as little as possible and make as much money as possible. This strategy will not work—period!

  4. P.S. Apple is clearly missing the boat here. It is possible that only the great Steve Jobs could have persuaded all the greedy, paranoid players in this game to agree to an all-encompassing deal—as he did with the music industry many moons ago.

  5. I don’t want to watch live TV from Hulu with the ads. I pay hulu to not watch ads.

    Everyone has a small bundle with 20 channels for 40 bucks. Apple shouldn’t get into this game. You still have commercials, you need a DVR. And once you add that in for each tv you are back to cable prices.
    We keep getting further from the solution consumers want. I want to choose the program I want. I will pay, I will not watch ads for stuff I have already paid for.

  6. Hulu is owned by Comcast, Fox, Disney and Time-Warner. A couple of years back they were trying to unload it, but I do not know what the position is today. Maybe a purchase is in order.

  7. Most of the 2D content/infrastructure is going to be nearly worthless in the next few years. Who is going to watch content on a 2D screen when AR or VR content will be all around us?

    Maybe Apple is playing a longer game here, and partnering with certain players to deliver this paradigm shift when the technology is ready.

    1. Yes, like all of those 3D networks we have now. 3D was a fad and is dead.

      Until I see otherwise, I expect VR to be a home entertainment fad and die too. If there is a VR technique that does not glasses or a headpiece, it may work, otherwise it will fail. People did not like wearing glasses to get 3D and will not like wearing a headpiece to get VR. VR may work in video games and special productions, but not for normal viewing.

  8. Eddy has been busy lately shopping for flip-flops and Hawaiian style shirts for his quarterly trips to the Baja. Securing TV deals vs the Baja? No brainer.

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