Hulu Available In Japan As Subscription Service

Video streaming website Hulu is available on computer and cell phone screens in Japan. It's the first overseas office for the service and comes at a critical time for Hulu — it's up for sale. In the U.S., a lot of Hulu's content is free but the Japanese version is subscription-only.

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STEVE INSKEEP, host:

And today's last word in business today is going global.

The Internet video streaming website Hulu is now available on computer and cell phone screens in Japan. It's the first overseas expansion for the service and it comes at a critical time for Hulu, which it's up for sale. Right now it's owned by NBC Universal, Walt Disney, News Corp and a private equity firm.

Here in the United States, a lot of Hulu content is free, but the Japanese version is subscription only, costs about $19 per month. And for now, viewers there do not have to deal with any advertisements.

Some critics say it'd be a better deal in Japan if the site offered Japanese programming. Hulu promises that will come, with time. But for now, viewers in Japan can get their fill of shows like "CSI," "Star Trek" and "90210."

And that's the business news on MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

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