Hulu will begin streaming ad-supported TV content to mobile devices at no charge, CEO Mike Hopkins said at a conference today. Hulu’s free service was previously only accessible through the desktop, although Hulu Plus subscribers were able to stream TV on mobile.
According to an official blog post, free mobile streaming will begin this summer. Specific shows weren’t mentioned, and Hopkins added that mobile streaming will require new licensing deals.
Currently, Hulu offers between five and 12 recent episodes of shows for free for desktop users, with larger libraries unlocked with a $7.99 monthly subscription to Hulu Plus. Hopkins says Hulu Plus now has 6 million subscribers.
Hulu has also added a few new types of advertisements. The most interesting one is called an “in-stream purchase unit,” which will allow users to order a pizza from Pizza Hut without leaving the Hulu “environment.” There are also so-called “360 ads,” which will enable advertisers to serve interactive ads to mobile users.
The “next generation” of Hulu’s iPhone app will launch along with with free episodes of TV later with summer.