Hulu revealed a little more about their live streaming television service this morning, most notably that as of today, it’s now available to the public in a beta test. If you’re interested, you can sign up here.
The live TV service was first announced in May of this year, and the streaming TV market has gotten a little more competitive since then even, with DirecTV Now starting a new service and YouTube TV announcing one. It’s certainly a crowded market, but what sets Hulu apart a little is that their offering combines live TV with a robust on demand library. So not only will subscribers get traditional cable TV networks live, they’ll also get access to a big library of other shows and movies.
Hulu with Live TV has a price of $40 a month, which gets you more than 50 live channels. Hulu’s regular library costs just under $10 ($4 more for an ad free version), so the TV price is about $30 a month, or right in line with all their competitors.
The basic plan allows for two simultaneous streams, but an “Unlimited Screens” plan is available for $15 more a month. That plan is a little unique in that it lets users watch unlimited screens at home, plus three streams outside the home. An “Enhanced Cloud DVR” bundle ($15 a month) provides 200 hours of DVR recordings that automatically skip past ads. Choose the “Unlimited Screens” and “Enhanced Cloud DVR” bundle together, and the price is $20 a month.
Hulu’s lineup includes all the cable standards like ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, CBS Sports, ESPN, Fox Sports, TNT, CNN, E!, Travel, A&E, Freeform, FX, and plenty more.
Notably absent though, are Viacom networks like MTV, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon. Viacom has a deal with DirecTV Now and Sling TV, but they have taken an anti-online stance for the most part. Some shows from those networks are in the on-demand catalog though. Not clear right now is what local channels will be available.
Hulu’s live beta will be available on Chromecast, Xbox One, Apple TV, iOS, and Android. A beta test for Fire TV, Roku, and Samsung smart TVs will be coming soon.
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