December 13th, 2022
Most people think of Netflix when they think of the oldest streaming services, but Hulu debuted just a year later, in 2008. Despite never expanding beyond US borders, it remains one of the top streaming services, with a large library of movies, shows, and even live television.
Hulu is in an unusual position with the launch of Disney Plus because it is majority-owned by Disney, but it still offers a unique service with some excellent original content like Only Murders in the Building and The Handmaid's Tale. It is just available in the United States. Instead, Disney Plus decided to launch more mature content in international markets under the Star brand, including previously created content for Hulu.
What exactly is Hulu, and is the monthly fee paid for it worthwhile? In this comprehensive guide, we answer these and other questions.
Do you want to give the service a shot? Get a 30-day free trial by clicking the link below, or take advantage of the Disney Bundle, which includes Disney Plus, Hulu, and ESPN Plus for $13.99 (with ads) or $19.99 (no ads) per month.
What is Hulu?
The video-on-demand streaming service Hulu has been in operation for more than ten years. With over 40 million subscribers, It is among the best and biggest streaming services in the country.
Hulu is also an excellent cable-cutting alternative for many traditional cable subscribers. It not only has a massive library of around 2,500 movies and over 40,000 episodes from thousands of TV shows, but it also plans to stream live TV via the live TV service Hulu Plus (more on this farther down).
The use of advertisements is one contentious feature that distinguishes Hulu from most of its competitors. The most affordable plans (and bundles) include ads in the content, similar to what you might see on network television. Paying for a service and still seeing advertisements may be frustrating for some users, but it does help to keep the cost low.
Paying twice as much will be required of those who do not want to see advertisements. In contrast to many other streaming services, you can pay extra for premium add-ons like TV channels, unlimited simultaneous streams, and more.
How does Hulu operate?
When compared to other streaming services, Hulu is a little trickier to use, especially if you have a Hulu Plus Live TV subscription. Essentially, it works the same way, with a remote server hosting the content. You connect your device to this server (such as a smartphone, tablet, smart TV, etc.) and start streaming.
No matter which plans you select, you must first complete a few steps before you can start streaming. This is mostly to see what kind of content you're interested in so that recommendations can be made, and it can be skipped if you want to start streaming right away.
To access local TV channels as a Hulu Plus Live TV subscriber, you must first set up a Home network. One Home network is all you can have, but you can switch it up to four times a year for free. While not connected to your Home network, you will be unable to stream TV stations on non-mobile devices.
Streaming services must also run smoothly over a stable internet connection.
Here are the recommended Hulu internet speeds:
3.0 Mbps — Speed recommended for standard streaming.
8.0 Mbps is the recommended speed for streaming live TV.
UHD (4K) streaming is recommended at a speed of 16.0 Mbps.
More information: How does Hulu make money?
Is Hulu worthwhile?
The plan you select will determine whether Hulu is worthwhile or not. The ad-supported plan is one of the best values in the streaming world, costing only $7.99 per month. It works well as a standalone service or as a supplement to other streaming services such as rival Netflix or Amazon Prime Video.
The ad-free version, which costs nearly twice as much for the same content at $14.99 per month, is more difficult to justify. This option is only worthwhile if you have extra money to spend and can't stand advertisements in any shape or form, or if you want to watch videos offline.
One of the best deals in streaming is Hulu's ad-supported package.
It's a little trickier to recommend Hulu Plus Live TV, though. It can be an excellent way for traditional cable subscribers to bridge the gap between cable TV and total cord-cutting using only streaming services. For everyone else, however, it is an expensive way to watch shows and movies online.
Furthermore, even the ad-supported plans allow you to watch many new shows the day after they air, ensuring that you don't miss out on the latest shows. Due to the fact that Hulu Plus Live TV only supports a single Home network and two concurrent streams, it is also more challenging to share with family.
The Disney bundle (which includes Disney Plus, ESPN Plus, and Hulu) is also available for $13.99 per month or $19.99 per month with the Hulu No Ads option. This provides access to a massive amount of content for a fee that is only slightly higher than the standard Netflix plan. If you want the most bang for your buck, the bundle deal is the way to go.
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