The likely hold-up: Apple's 30% cut. The breakthrough: AirPlay on the Mac
FORTUNE — Like many Hulu Plus subscribers who use the $7.99-per-month service to catch up on TV shows they’ve missed, I have no shortage of ways to get it. It’s on Roku, PS3, XBox and the Wii. There’s a Hulu app for the iPad, the Mac, Linux and Microsoft MSFT Windows. It even came pre-loaded on my Internet-ready Panasonic HDTV.
But as Walt Mossberg pointedly reminded Tim Cook at D10 in May, it wasn’t available on Apple TV.
But Peter Kafka, AllThingD’s media reporter, offers a couple theories that ring true.
- The likely hang-up: Apple’s insistence that it get a 30% cut of Hulu Plus subscriptions purchased through the Apple TV. When you sign up for the service on Hulu’s website, Hulu keeps the full $7.99 monthly nut.
- What changed: The arrival of AirPlay in Mountain Lion last week meant that Mac users could start watching content from Hulu’s free website on their large-screen TVs without paying a monthly bill. That’s not something Hulu’s owners — Disney/ABC DIS , Comcast/NBC CMCSA , and News Corp./Fox NWS — or their partners could long abide.