Posts Tagged ‘hulu plus’

Netflix vs. Hulu, revisited

Sunday, November 21st, 2010 | Percy Olsen

Updated to reflect the $8.99/month to $7.99/month price-drop in Netflix’s Streaming-Only plan

Back in April, Cadenza compared and contrasted Netflix and Hulu on their movie and TV selections and their prices. There wasn’t a clear winner. While Netflix had a bigger database of movies and TV shows, Hulu had a trump card, or something close to it. What was Hulu’s Queen in a game of Egyptian Ratsrew? Timeliness. Hulu only carried three to five episodes of each show, but they were almost always the three to five most recent episodes. Use Netflix to study history. Use Hulu to keep up to date.

But things have changed. In April, Hulu Plus was just a rumor, but then the website officially launched the service in June for $9.99/month. A subscription gave viewers access to the backlog for dozens of shows. When compared to Netflix’s vast resources, Hulu Plus was charging a similar price for less stuff.

Hulu Plus recently dropped its price to $7.99/month – the same price as Netflix’s Streaming-Only option – which makes things more interesting. But little else has changed. You can find nearly all of the shows and episodes on Hulu Plus on Netflix Streaming too, but that extra dollarĀ nothingĀ for Netflix also gives you more shows and thousands of movies. Seriously, Hulu Plus. Where’s Pushing Daisies? Where’s the entire series of Friday Night Lights? Oh right, they’re on Netflix.

Subscriptions to Hulu Plus and Netflix let you stream on the same slew of devices (iProducts, approved televisions, no Android. Never Android.). It’s great that Hulu Plus is stepping out of the non-computer screen, but it’s a shame that you can’t access Hulu Minus on anything besides a computer. I’m sure it’s more the networks’ fault than Hulu’s, but it’s frustrating nontheless.

Hulu is basically a cloud-based DVR that records shows before you even have to ask it to. It’s convenient and free, everything the internet’s about. But Hulu Plus is overpriced and underwhelming, even at just eight bucks a month. My recommendation? Visit vanilla Hulu while it’s still free and enjoy Netflix’s big library on the side.