Hulu blocked the BlackBerry PlayBook just one day after the device was officially released. Apparently Hulu did not like the idea of PlayBook users streaming media from the service, according to Crackberry.
This was expected, of course, given that Hulu blocks pretty much every mobile device that is ever released. In order to ensure that no international users outside the US have access to the videos, Hulu also blocks many anonymous proxies, Amazon EC2 IP addresses, and virtual private networks.
Still, this decision is particularly unfortunate since the PlayBook is the one of the few tablets that supports native Flash. So much for "uncompromised web browsing" on the PlayBook. It looks like the only way around this is if Research In Motion strikes a deal with Hulu, but with alternatives like Netflix, would it really be worth the effort?
Hulu ultimately wants to get viewers to purchase Hulu Plus, which gives subscribers an expanded content library in the form of full seasons and more episodes of shows already available on the free version as well as allowing access to the streaming service from more devices. The only problem is Hulu Plus does not give you access on all your devices: just the ones they have so far decided to allow.
Granted, this is a decently long list (Apple's iOS 4 devices, Sony's PlayStation 3, the Roku Streaming Player, WD TV Media Player, as well as Blu-ray-linked television made by Samsung, Sony, and Vizio) but it's hardly all-encompassing. I would say that if Hulu is going to block devices like the PlayBook, it should work to have Hulu Plus working on them in time for launch. Otherwise, Hulu just looks like a poor sport, rather than a company trying to do business.