You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Hulu Adds Channel Guide to Live-TV Web User Interface

Turns out, people want to watch TV streamed over the internet a lot like they have watched TV for years: by flipping through live channels.

Hulu in August rolled out a dedicated web portal for subscribers of the $40-per-month live TV service, at beta.hulu.com. But the initial iteration of the web user-interface for live TV was lacking a channel guide akin to the interactive guides that are a standard feature of on cable and satellite TV.

“We know that many of you love the new UI, but we also know that many of you miss having a channel guide for Live TV,” Ben Smith, Hulu’s head of experience, wrote in a blog post Wednesday. “So, on the web experience for live TV, we have enhanced the UI to make it easier to see what’s on now, what’s on next and change the channel while you watch and plan for your afternoon or night of TV.”

With the updated web UI for live TV, users can now scroll through all of their channels to see what’s on now, or click the arrow on the right to see what’s up next on any channel. In addition, you can click on the channel logo or the program name to start watching that channel, as well as filter programming to find and sort sports, news or kids programming.

In general, since launching the Hulu Live TV service in May, the company has heard from customers who’ve told Hulu “that our live content feels, at times, hidden or harder to get to than you would like,” Smith wrote.

Popular on Variety

The original challenge for Hulu was how to integrate its on-demand content with the live TV channels in a “seamless” way, Smith continued. That led to its initial design geared around a personalized UI, letting viewers follow specific shows or favorite networks. But Hulu Live TV users wanted a separate UI just for watching live television; the Hulu web interface for live TV does that, and now it includes a familiar channel guide.

In the web UI, Hulu also has changed the way it recommends content. Smith noted that live TV customers watch a lot of sports, so Hulu updated the web interface to provide curated areas for college football and NFL games, automatically recommending games with teams users have added to “My Stuff.” The web UI also more frequently suggests live news and sports if viewers have expressed interest in that programming. As a result, according to Smith, viewing of live content increased by 70% with the new web UI.

Hulu’s Live TV bundle includes about 50 broadcast and cable networks including ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, ESPN, CNN, Fox News, TBS, TNT and Disney Channel (with Showtime is available for $9 extra per month). Absent from the lineup are HBO and channels from AMC Networks, Viacom, Starz, and Discovery Communications.

More Digital

  • YouTube-Rewind-2019

    YouTube Rewind 2019 Scraps Old Format After Last Year's Torrent of Dislikes

    YouTube has taken a brand-new approach with this year’s YouTube Rewind mashup video — dropping its tradition of highly produced original videos segments. Instead, the 2019 version is a montage of what the platform says were the biggest moments and milestones from around the world on YouTube. The move came after the 2018 YouTube Rewind [...]

  • PewDiePie

    PewDiePie Is the Most-Watched YouTube Creator of 2019 With 4 Billion Views

    PewDiePie’s Bro Army remains stronger than ever: The top YouTuber is the most-viewed creator of 2019 on the platform year-to-date, with more than 4 billion views this year, according to YouTube. The comedian, game vlogger and meme aficionado, whose real name is Felix Kjellberg, is also the most-subscribed individual YouTube creator, currently with 102 million [...]

  • Variety Summit Examines Streaming Options and

    Variety Summit Examines Streaming Options and Innovation

    Analytics, monetization and the expanding landscape of entertainment will be the focus of Variety’s Innovate Summit: Discovery & Data Science in Media on Dec. 5 in West Hollywood. The event is presented by PwC. The summit will feature 32 speakers, each considered industry leaders in the emerging world of streaming. Each panel will speak to [...]

  • Talas World Xandra

    Amazon Alexa Gets First Interactive Audio Original, Courtesy of Xandra (EXCLUSIVE)

    First there was “Bandersnatch,” now there is “Tala’s World.” Interactive media is making the jump to smart speakers, starting with a new serialized young adult adventure series produced by audio startup Xandra, and licensed exclusively by Amazon. “Tala’s World” consists of seven episodes, which invite listeners to come along on an audio adventure that involves [...]

  • Billie Eilish Dazzles Crowd With Intimate

    Billie Eilish Dazzles Crowd With Intimate Acoustic Set at Apple Headquarters

    “This is really insane. Nothing like this has ever been done on this stage.” Billie Eilish was addressing the packed crowd midway through her set at the Steve Jobs Theater at Apple Park in California’s Silicon Valley, marking the first time an artist has given a public concert at the iconic home to Apple’s keynote [...]

  • James-Charles-YouTube

    YouTube Reveals 2019 Top-Trending Videos, Most-Viewed Music Videos

    YouTube is out with its year-in-review lists for 2019, documenting the top videos, trends, creators, music, games and more. Leading the list of U.S. top-trending videos was beauty influencer James Charles’ “No More Lies” (pictured above), his video response to accusations of betrayal and misbehavior by vlogger Tati Westbrook. After the controversy blew up in [...]

  • Billie Eilish in Talks With Apple

    Billie Eilish Nearing Deal With Apple TV Plus for R.J. Cutler-Helmed Documentary

    Apple TV Plus is nearing a deal to acquire a yet-untitled Billie Eilish documentary, directed by R.J. Cutler and produced by Interscope Films, a source close to the situation confirmed to Variety. While reports have that said that film is part of a $25 million deal and has a budget between $1-2 million, a source [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content