Just like the primetime television season, online TV website Hulu has been sleeping this summer, adding a few shows here or there while it waited for the fall primetime season. Behind the scenes though, the ABC/FOX/Disney joint venture has been building new features such as Hulu Desktop and its Facebook app.
Now its experimental division, Hulu Labs, has launched two additional products just in time for the new television season. The first is actually an update to Hulu Desktop: it now works in Linux. The other product, Hulu Publisher Tools, is simple but could have a big impact on the future of Hulu embeds.
Hulu Desktop's new compatibility with Linux assures that Hulu's slick desktop app for watching TV is available on all three major operating systems. They got the Linux version out surprisingly quickly. Heck, there's still no Chrome for Mac and it's been over a year, much less the Linux version, so we applaud Hulu's speed to market.
The other new labs feature, Hulu Publisher Tools, is basically a directory of the most relevant and popular videos on Hulu at any given time. In the past, if Jay Leno were to break some news on his show and you wanted to embed a clip on your blog, you'd have to take the time to create the right embed on Hulu (a tedious process). Now if you're a publisher, you'll find it on Publisher Tools, pre-made for embedding. You can even use the Publisher Tools to quickly make a playlist of daily highlights.
Both features are relatively small and are meant for small audiences, but these types of features add up. If Hulu receives even 2% more embeds because of Publisher Tools, it's a major win for distribution, ad revenue, and branding. The company is really making good use of Hulu Labs, and it's likely to pay off.
Reviews: Hulu, linux