The online video service Hulu probably will not be available on the iPad when Apple’s recently-introduced tablet begins shipping in March. Along with technical hurdles due to the device lacking Flash support, lawyers may need to become involved to reclassify the iPad as a mobile device.
Additionally, when Hulu does become available for the iPad, don’t expect the service to be free. “The most likely scenario is one where access to Hulu on the iPad comes as part of a subscription package,” according to the Wall Street Journal’s All Things Digital, citing “multiple people familiar” with the situation.
Possibly more daunting would be to define the iPad as a “mobile device,” like the iPhone. This would allow Hulu’s network backers – NBC Universal, Fox and ABC – to create a three-screen revenue stream. However, reclassification means renegotiating contracts with content holders already getting money from allowing their shows on cell phones.
In the end, it is unlikely Hulu will make it aboard the iPad before the device reaches consumers next month, the report concludes.