Cablevision Launches Hulu as Cable TV Channel

Cablevision Systems is now delivering Hulu to cable TV customers through their set-top boxes — the first time the Internet-video service is available directly through a pay-TV platform as a dedicated channel.

The New York-area cable operator has integrated Hulu into Optimum TV, letting subscribers access the streaming TV service directly from the interactive program guide on all current-generation set top boxes. The move means Hulu is now on virtually the same footing for Cablevision customers as premium cable networks like HBO, Showtime and Starz. However, Hulu content is available only on-demand, not as a linear feed.

Netflix, meanwhile, has been available for several years on pay-TV services, including the U.K.’s Virgin Media and on several smaller U.S. cable operators, through an integration with TiVo’s set-tops.

The Hulu service, priced starting at $7.99 per month, can be accessed through Cablevision’s Optimum channel 605. Customers who already have a Hulu subscription can sign into their Hulu account, while those without a Hulu account can access a free trial offer and then subscribe on TV or by logging in to optimum.net.

“As Hulu’s first cable distribution partner, Optimum is pleased to also be the first provider to offer the unique ability to access Hulu directly from the program guide,” said Tom Montemagno, Cablevision’s exec VP of programming.

Last year Cablevision became the first pay-TV to agree to distribute Hulu’s on-demand content to Optimum customers, although initially that was only online. “We are thrilled that Optimum customers can now access Hulu’s content library without having to leave their cable TV environment,” said Tim Connolly, Hulu’s senior VP of distribution and strategic partnerships.

The Hulu channel is currently available in select Cablevision service areas and will roll out across the remaining footprint in the coming weeks. The launch of Hulu on Optimum TV is powered by ActiveVideo’s CloudTV StreamCast, which delivers online video content to set-top boxes.

Hulu reached a deal last May with Suddenlink Communications, a midsize operator now owned by French telecom conglomerate Altice Group, to provide the streaming service on cable customers’ TiVo boxes. Suddenlink hasn’t activated the feature yet but it’s still in the works.

Cablevision is in the midst of being acquired by Altice in a $17.7 billion deal, which is pending regulatory approval. As of the end of 2015, Cablevision had 2.59 million video subscribers, down 3.2% from a year prior.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Podium Publishing Taps Scott P. Dickey

    Podium Publishing Taps Scott P. Dickey as Chief Executive Officer

    Independent audiobook publisher Podium Publishing has selected veteran media executive Scott P. Dickey as chief executive officer. Greg Lawrence, former CEO and co-founder,  remains as Podium’s publisher and a member of the board of directors. As CEO, Dickey will set and implement the day-to-day and long-term marketing, production and business strategy for the company as [...]

  • "The Stockholm Syndrome" - Pictured: Rajesh

    Inside the Blockbuster $600 Million 'Big Bang Theory' Streaming Deal With HBO Max

    As one of TV’s most popular shows of the past 20 years, “The Big Bang Theory” was sure to command a huge price when the streaming rights were finally shopped in a red-hot market for iconic comedies with large libraries. But “Big Bang Theory” wasn’t shopped widely on the open market before the streaming pact [...]

  • Mark Zuckerberg Facebook

    Mark Zuckerberg Can Be Overruled by Facebook's New Oversight Board on Content Decisions

    Mark Zuckerberg, chairman and CEO of Facebook, can’t be ousted by investors — he owns a controlling interest in the company’s voting shares. But according to the social giant, the new Oversight Board — colloquially called Facebook’s “Supreme Court” — that it is setting up to adjudicate appeals about whether to leave up or take [...]

  • YouTube - Google UK Offices

    Google Launches Ability to Find Key Moments in YouTube Videos via Search

    Google has introduced a new way to find exact moments in YouTube videos through its search engine, with initial partners including CBS Sports. According to Google, search results now will provide links to key moments within the video — if, that is, YouTube content creators have provided the necessary timestamp information to Google. “You’ll be [...]

  • Spotify logo is presented on a

    Spotify VP Paul Vogel Talks Subscription Prices, Label Licenses, Podcasts

    The annual Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference gives representatives from major companies the opportunity to present to the investment community, and Paul Vogel, Spotify’s VP and head of financial planning & analysis, treasury and investor relations, spoke on the streaming giant’s behalf on Tuesday morning. While many of his comments were statements frequently heard in the [...]

  • Directv Now

    AT&T Sued for Allegedly Creating Bogus DirecTV Now Accounts

    A group of investors sued AT&T, alleging the telco artificially inflated subscriber counts for its DirecTV Now streaming service — including by creating fake accounts. In the federal class-action lawsuit, the plaintiffs allege that AT&T wanted to make DirecTV Now seem more successful than it actually was as another way to rationalize its $85 billion [...]

  • Streaming Battle: Disney, Apple and More

    The Battle for Eyeballs Makes for an Action-Packed Streaming Arena (Column)

    It came as no surprise last week that Disney CEO Bob Iger had resigned from the Apple board since the two companies are poised to launch competing subscription streaming services in less than two months. But Iger’s departure (announced the same day that Apple revealed its Nov. 1 launch date and $5-a-month price point) underscores [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content