Hulu’s transformation from a free service for watching TV shows has transformed into a real player in the streaming world. With shows from major networks like NBC, FOX, and ABC available on demand and popular movies, Hulu offers one of the best streaming services around.
Any TV buff will be impressed with Hulu’s library with access to many popular titles. While Hulu has the entire collection of only a few shows, it does have the exclusive rights to shows like Family Guy. Hulu might not have all of the movies of Netflix and Amazon Prime and certainly not much original content, but it certainly makes up for it with the combination of TV shows and movies they offer.
Not many services offer complete series of TV shows like Hulu – which is why many have made the switch. Lovers of foreign films and anime will appreciate Hulu’s packed library of awesome titles. Watch from a phone, TV, or computer with Hulu’s mobile app and compatible devices so you’re never behind on your favorite shows.
An “ad-free” experience with ads is understandably frustrating, but to Hulu’s credit, they do have a disclaimer before you buy. Hulu’s sub-par HD quality collection can be a deal breaker for some, especially with the rising bar for TV and computer quality. Competitors like Netflix have much better search and recommendation features.
Hulu Bottom Line
Hulu offers the best service for getting access to TV shows – even if the commercials reminiscent of regular network TV still linger. TV buffs, anime fans, and lovers of foreign film will appreciate the collection that makes quite the case for cutting the cord.
Hulu | A Smorgasbord of Content
Just as technology has replaced the console television set occupying a corner of the living room or family room with giant, high-definition flat screens, smartphones and tablets as the means by which people watch TV and movies, the dependency on cable and satellite as the source of the content they watch has undergone an equally dramatic change. Streaming services offer most of the same services as cable and satellite providers at a lower cost and with the added benefit of mobåility. One of the streaming services offering consumers a variety of options to tailor their programming to their viewing preferences is Hulu and Hulu Live TV.
Hulu subscribers get access to its streaming library of original programming, TV shows, movies and children’s programming along with the option to add live and on-demand TV. Basic services include the option of viewing with no commercials or with limited commercials. Subscribers can have the option of adding Showtime, Cinemax and other premium features at an additional cost.
Hulu Original Programming
Original programming offered by Hulu includes dramas, comedies, science fiction, reality TV and children’s shows. Among the series produced and offered by Hulu are the following:
- The Handmaid’s Tale: The series premiered on Hulu in 2017 with weekly episodes.
- Casual: Premiered in 2015 as a weekly series offering a combination of comedy and drama.
- The Mindy Project: The popular comedy series premiered in 2012 on Fox with completed seasons available on Hulu.
- Chance: A drama series with Hugh Laurie about a forensic psychiatrist.
- Harlots: British drama that premiered in 2017.
Basic Hulu service is $7.99 a month with the first month free. This gives you movies, original programming, children’s shows and on-demand access to TV shows. Programming comes with commercials and does not include access to live TV. A commercial-free package offering essentially the same programming options is available for $11.99 a month with the first month free.
Premium programming from HBO, Showtime and Cinemax is available for an addition monthly charge beginning at $8.99 depending upon the content provider selected. Live and on-demand TV is available through Hulu Live TV for a monthly subscription price of $39.99.
Hulu On The Go
Keeping up to date on your favorite programming on your mobile device is easy if you have a Hulu-compatible device. Devices on which you can view Hulu content include:
- Android and iOS tablets and phones
- Fire TV and Fire TV Stick
- Xbox 360
- Fire Tablets
- Apple TV
- Select smart TVs
The Hulu website lists other devices on which service is available, but it cautions subscribers to Hulu Live TV that live TV programming is not available on some devices.
Hulu Live TV
In addition to live and on-demand programming, subscribers to Hulu Live TV have access to the following features:
- Live TV pause, rewind and fast forward
- Record up to 50 hours of live TV
- Ability to watch on two screens simultaneously
- Create additional profiles for up to six household members
An optional service is available for live TV subscribers to access unlimited screens and an enhanced recording function.
Hulu has a solid reputation for providing a plethora of digital streaming content over the last 10 years, and there’s no sign of them slowing down.
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How It Works
After reviewing their website, sign up for 1 month free to check out some of your favorite shows and movies. Pick from no commercials or limited commercials as your base plan. There is a price difference to be aware of. Then use your Facebook account to connect or sign up with just your email, password, and name. Once logged in, you will add your billing info and are instantly set to begin streaming your favorites.
Plans & Pricing
Paid subscribers are used to an ad-free experience in streaming services, so it might be frustrating to pay $7.99 and still see ads. An extra $4 gets a mostly free ad experience, but there are still some ads with certain content, but $11.99 per month is certainly a deal.
Hulu isn’t completely intuitive and the search function leaves something to be desired, but the overall viewing experience is still better than some competitors. If you can overlook the occasional ad in the premium service, Hulu has a lot to offer. With cross-platform viewing options, Hulu is a solid alternative for watching your favorite shows on-the-go.
They offer chat, phone and community support options all from their contact page.