Put your alternate content her

According to the latest Comscore figures, the number of monthly Hulu viewers grew to over 43.5m in May 2010. Monthly streams grew to 1.2bn.

That last figure puts the US video online site second only to Google (i.e. YouTube) – so it’s not surprising that there’s so much press speculation about when, or if, Hulu will eventually make it to the UK.

But how do these types of traffic statistic allow us to compare Hulu with ‘traditional’ TV viewing? The trouble is, Internet content companies always measure their performance in terms of users, streams and downloads – when what we really need for comparative purposes is some TV audience share data.

Let’s try and convert some oranges to apples: usefully, Comscore mentions that “the average Hulu viewer watched 27.0 videos, totaling 2.7 hours of video per viewer. So Hulu’s 43m-plus viewers would have racked up 118m hours of viewing.

How does that compare with what the ‘traditional’ US TV audience watches in a month? Recent Ofcom research put the average figure for US viewing in 2008 at 4.6 hours a day, so that gives a monthly total of close to 140 hours of viewing a month per person.

Nielsen, meanwhile, reports that for the 2008-2009 season, there were nearly 290m TV viewers. Multiply the two figures together, and you get 40.6bn hours of viewing across the US TV audience as a whole per month. The Hulu figure, if you do the math, is about 0.3% of that.

Is that good or bad? That’s a matter of opinion. But it does put the performance of the world’s second most popular online video service in perspective.

This entry was posted on Saturday, May 15th, 2010 at 7:41 am and is filed under Industry News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

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