Hulu announced on Thursday that it will be the first streaming TV service to allow subscribers to pay for service using mobile payment service Venmo.
New subscribers can sign up for a Hulu account and then pay with Venmo by using a mobile web browser to sign up for Hulu and selecting Venmo as the payment option. After that, your Venmo balance or linked payment method will be used for monthly recurring subscription fees.
For now, Venmo is only an option for new subscribers but Hulu said that existing Hulu subscribers will be able to switch their payment preferences to Venmo in the coming months.
The Venmo partnership adds another payment option for current and potential Hulu subscribers. Currently, Hulu allows users to pay directly or through digital platforms including iTunes, Amazon and Roku. Hulu subscribers can also pay through Spotify’s platform and through Sprint.
That array of payment options could be a contributing factor to Hulu’s accelerated growth rate in 2018. Hulu began the year with 17 million subscribers, a figure the company disclosed during CES in Las Vegas. New comments from Hulu CEO Randy Freer suggest that the company will end 2018 well ahead of where it began the year.
According to TechCrunch, Freer said that Hulu expects to add more subscribers in the second half of 2018 than it did in the first. Considering Hulu said it had 17 million subscribers in January and said it reached 20 million over the summer, which means Hulu will have at least 23 million subscribers by the end of the year.
Freer also provided an update on Hulu’s Live TV service and said that it added 10 times as many subscribers as DirecTV Now during the third quarter. Since DirecTV Now added 49,000 subscribers, which suggests that Hulu added nearly 500,000 live TV subscribers.