Why AT&T might be interested in Hulu: A big mobile data payday

Gigaom

Hulu apparently has yet another suitor. According to an AllThingsD report, AT&T(s) is in discussions with the Chernin Group about a joint bid on the online TV portal — they figure their combined financial might can meet Hulu’s high asking price.

Why would AT&T, a mobile and wireline phone company, be interested in an online video portal? Through its U-Verse service, AT&T is a video-programming provider selling the equivalent of cable TV to 4.8 million households. It could be interested in Hulu for the same reasons as Time Warner Cable(s twc) and DirecTV(s dtv) are, to bulk up their TV everywhere services.

AT&T flagship store logo But AT&T’s interest in Hulu might stem from much more unexpected place: its mobile division. Video is proving to a very tricky proposition for mobile operators. On the one hand, they’ve built these big fat wireless pipes to carry video, but on the other, they’re still…

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