Yep. That is the news. Hulu is about to launch its streaming services in Japan. I envy Japan now as they will now have our favorite Internet TV streaming service with out VPN, unlike all of us outside USA.
Hulu is about to materialize its plan of international expansion, which it has been planning for long, by expanding and launching its subscription services in Japan specifically, later this year. It must be noted here that, Hulu is launching subscription services and not the free one (as in USA). We can assume that Hulu is planning to launch Hulu Plus, that it launched months back for $7.99 a month to USA audience. Currently, Hulu has declined to comment on the prices on which they are planning to offer their subscription services to Japanese Audience.
Johannes Larcher, Hulu’s vice president and in-charge of international, said in his blog post that Hulu always aspired to serve the international market . He also added “In Japan, we also see an unfulfilled market need with respect to premium feature film and TV content, and very favorable environmental factors to a service like ours, including extensive broadband penetration, smart phone and other Internet-connected device ubiquity, and strong consumer interest”.
Japan as we all know is very technologically advanced and has great Cellphone and Broadband penetration and presents it self as a market which is always looking for video content online. This served as a perfect indication for Hulu to start its international expansion with none other than Japan. Hulu has plans to launch its services on all platforms including Internet, TV, Mobile, Tablet and several other devices as Japanese population is a huge consumer of gadgets and mobile devices.
Larcher also confirmed that Hulu has already opened its offices in Japan and that their Japanese team is already working day and night to make this launch as successful as they can. He added, “We have opened offices in Tokyo, with a dedicated Japanese team designing and running the service, and are hard at work finalizing preparations for launch later this year.”
According to Engadget , it seems like Netflix has also some plans to launch its services in Japan and Korea. Philip Wong of Cnet Asia assumed it by looking at the two job postings in late March , 2011 by US based Video on demand service provider, Netflix. Previously, Netflix CEO also announced in a blog post that Asia is third in row for their plans of international expansion.
Moreover, Netflix on the other hand has bigger plans as Jessie Becker, VP of Marketing at Netflix, announced in a blog post, “We’re excited to share with you the news that later this year, Netflix will expand to 43 countries throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, offering unlimited TV shows and movie streaming instantly over the Internet to TVs and computers for one low monthly subscription price.”
Netflix has already asked its prospective customers in Latin America and Caribbean to leave their info on the website, to get the first access to Netflix in Latin America and Caribbean. subscribers in these countries will be able to access Netflix in Spanish, Portuguese and English language. Hulu also plans to launch the Japanese Subtitles to the content in Japan.
Hulu is also planning and is ready to sell itself and Chief Executive of Walt Disney Co., who also own a part of Hulu LLC, said that, they are committed to selling. According to the report from WSJ, the talks with around 8 to 10 potential buyers are already in way. Potential Buyers include, Google Inc., Microsoft, Yahoo, Apple, Amazon and several other US and Non US Broadcasters.
Previously, we also saw BBC iPlayer announcing its plans to launch itself internationally, particularly in Central Europe. There is sudden speed in the international expansion of these Online TV Streaming services as Hulu announced its plans to launch in Japan, Netflix in 43 countries in Latin American and Carribean and BBC iPlayer in Europe. This will not only provide international users with quality internet TV streaming without any problem of going through VPN and proxies, as they had to go previously to access these popular internet streaming services, but would also provide a relief to American and British travelers of not missing on their favorite shows while travelling.
We will get back to you with all the updates on launching plans.
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Wish you a Happy and Private Internet Life !!
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