Moving to No. 8, Hulu continues to impress and gain viewers

There were many skeptics, myself included, when Hulu first launched in March. But since then, the online video site owned by Fox and NBC has continued to impress and gain viewers.

According to new stats from Nielsen [via paidContent], Hulu now ranks No. 8 among the Top 10 online video sites, generating more than 105 million streams to more than 3.2 million unique viewers during July.

That puts Hulu ahead of No. 10 Turner Sports and Entertainment Digital Network and No. 9 CNN Digital Network. Hulu is a breath away from No. 7 ESPN at 106-and-change million streams. Hulu reached No. 10 just a few months ago.

Of course, Hulu and every other video site known to man trails the Web’s No. 1 video service, YouTube, but that’s OK. YouTube offers a mix of professional and user-generated content, while Hulu is mostly Hollywood, baby.

Amazingly, Hulu continues to gain viewers without much promotion from Fox and NBC, who you’d think could throw in a quick spot for Hulu somewhere in its 24/7 Olympics coverage.

See also: Hulu update: Days of Summer, adding more viewers, Stewart and Colbert

Hulu, perhaps by design, silently rambles along, even when adding heavyweight content like Viacom shows “The Daily Show” and “Colbert Report.” The shows by Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert regularly account for a large percentage of the most-viewed TV episodes on Hulu.

The summer series is also a nice touch. I subscribed to the RSS feed and was continually surprised at the quality of content, depending on one’s tastes — “Lost in Translation,” “Angel,” “Raising Arizona” in June, “Men in Black,” “The Fifth Element,” “Coffee and Cigarettes” and “The Dresden Files” in July, and “Madmen” in August. Unlike other online offerings, I actually looked to see what new content was added.

We’ll see what happens over the next six months, but it sure feels like Hulu is figuring out a winning formula for professionally-produced video on the Web — even though it’s far from perfect.

last100 is edited by Steve O'Hear. Aside from founding last100, Steve is co-founder and CEO of Beepl and a freelance journalist who has written for numerous publications, including TechCrunch, The Guardian, ZDNet, ReadWriteWeb and Macworld, and also wrote and directed the Silicon Valley documentary, In Search of the Valley. See his full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.

One Response to “Moving to No. 8, Hulu continues to impress and gain viewers”

  1. David Mackey says:

    The biggest problem I have with Hulu’s content at this juncture is the spottiness of it all. Come on, if you are going to put a show online put the whole series online. There are some shows I’d like to give a try – but not at the second episode of the third season.