Is YouTube on the verge of becoming the next Hulu
? Probably not immediately, but a new Wall Street Journal report is shedding a bit of light onto a future that may include a certain amount of original content, obviously financed by Google
. Recently, YouTube initialized a YouTube Live streaming feature, and it sounds like that's just the start of a "major overhaul" that will soon be coming to the site.
The word is that YouTube is hoping to compete with broadcast and cable TV, and for that the happen, they need users to stay on YouTube longer. That's more attractive to advertisers, but with a focus on short, funny clips, it's hard to keep people focused on the site for any length of time.
As a part of the overhaul, YouTube will become home to a set of "channels" that will feature "several hours of professionally produced original programming a week." That kind of content could make YouTube a place to come for enjoyment in the evening, compared to a hit-and-miss site to view things like Rebecca Black's "Friday."
According to people briefed on the matter, Google could be preparing to spend as much as $100m in order to complete the overhaul, so they obviously have a good idea of just how profitable it would be. If not, well, that's a lot of cash to throw at something without reason to believe that a profit would be waiting. Assuming Google pulls this together, would YouTube become a more frequently visited place for you? Or does Hulu still have your heart?