STREAMING SATURDAY: Stranger Things and More Streaming News

A third season of Stranger Things is just one of this week’s highlights from the streaming service providers.

Netflix, Hulu, and DIRECTV NOW have had some big announcement this week. While Netflix and Hulu’s news releases take an overly positive vibe, DIRECTV NOW’s announce shows some promise. This means that there’s plenty of good news from these three streaming services. The most important has to do with Netflix’s hit series Stranger Things. The announcements from Hulu and DIRECTV NOW are important, too; but come on, it’s Stranger Things. What in the world of streaming can be more exciting than that?

Netflix Announces Third Season of Stranger Things!
Yes, you’ve read that correctly. Netflix recently announced a third season of its smash hit series, Stranger Things. The shows co-creators Ross and Matt Duffer recently confirmed a third season of the popular nod to 1980s sci-fi films. The third season is likely to take place outside the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana. In the same interview, the Duffer brothers acknowledged that a fourth and final season is also highly likely. (Admittedly, I’m more than a little disappointed to hear that my favorite show might only last four seasons!)

Stranger Things fans such as myself can’t wait for the series’ second season to debut in October. While there are several clues as to what might be going on in season two, fans have no idea about the focus of season three. I’ve made some predictions for season two based upon the scant clues in the original trailer. Well, an even newer season two trailer has been released and it’s loaded with some awesome 1980s references. (My favorite is Dragon’s Lair, one of the first laser disc arcade games of its time.) Check out the new Stranger Things season two trailer and see if my predictions stack up.

Hulu Adds Features and an Exec
On Tuesday, Hulu announced the addition of Xbox 360 to support for the new Hulu experience and Hulu with Live TV beta. Now, Hulu viewers who use Xbox 360 get the “new and improved” Hulu interface that everyone seems to hate. The upside is that you’ll have the option to subscribe to the Hulu with Live TV beta plan. It also lets you create up to six profiles that feature a lineup of current programs. The more you watch Hulu, the more tailor the service becomes.

In other news, Hulu recently announced that Linda Cardenas is its new Head of View Experience Operations. She will join the team at Hulu’s new contact center in San Antonio, Texas. Prior to joining Hulu, Cardenas was senior vice president of customer service and voice of the customer at SWBC. There, she led the company’s growth by improving its customer experience, talent management strategies, and employee/labor relations. She’s earned a Bachelor’s degree in business administration/marketing from the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Hulu’s hiring of Linda Cardenas comes on the heels of other big names heading up streaming services. For example, Sling TV recently hired its new CEO, W. Eric Carlson. He will assume the role as the company’s new CEO on August 31, 2017. Carlson, currently DISH Network’s president and chief operating office, replaces Sling TV CEO Roger Lynch. Around the same time, Netflix hired ABC executive Shonda Rhimes, creator of Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away with Murder.

DIRECTV NOW Delays Q&A
Many in the streaming community were looking forward to DIRECTV NOW’s question and answer session. The streaming provider scheduled its Q&A for 1-4 PM Eastern Standard Time on August 23, 2017. Now, that event has been cancelled, according to DIRECTV NOW. The company stated that its rescheduling its Q&A to allow for a more comprehensive discussion about DIRECTV NOW’s many new features. Streaming insiders speculate whether this has to do with the possible launch of DIRECTV NOW’s new DVR feature, which is scheduled sometime during the fall.

More to Come, As Usual…
At this point, it’s more than just a bit redundant to say there will be more streaming news next week. That’s always the case. The streaming service companies are locked in an unending battle to outdo each other. Because of this, streaming fans have come to expect constant evolution in the world of streaming. This means plenty of announcements of new original programming, upgrades in services, and much more. So, I guess I’ll see you next week with even more new and exciting details. Until then, keep on streaming!