Hulu finally took the wraps off of their Live TV service this morning at their Upfront presentation, an even that takes place every year. The service is launching in beta today and is available on multiple platforms including Android, Chromecast, iOS, Apple TV, and Xbox One. Obviously there are some major platforms missing there, but Hulu will likely add support for those – including Roku, Android TV and PlayStation 4 – in the coming weeks and months.
Included in this service is all of the premium content that existing users pay $7.99/month for already. So not only do you get live TV, but you essentially get one of the largest “on-demand” catalogs available. Hulu also gives all users of its live TV service up to 50 hours of recording storage through Cloud DVR. Now users are able to upgrade to an enhanced Cloud DVR for $14.99/month, which gets them 200 hours of storage, nearly quadrupling the storage. Users, by default, can stream on two screens simultaneously. However, if users want more than two screens, they can upgrade to unlimited for $14.99/month. As far as channels go, Hulu seems to have all of the big names, however a complete list has not been provided just yet. They have NBC, CBS, FOX and ABC on-board as well as their local affiliates. Additionally, they have partnered with NBCUniversal, Scripps Networks Interactive, Turner Networks, A+E Networks, CBS Corporation, The Walt Disney Company and 21st Century Fox, for streaming content on their service. There are said to be about 50 channels available right now.
Hulu is now entering a pretty crowded space already, but it does appear that they have a better setup than what the other competitors have. Besides PlayStation VUE, they are the only provider to have the four major networks on-board around the country. While many of the others are missing CBS, or only have on-demand for NBC and/or ABC. Hulu is going to face some stiff competition with PlayStation VUE, DIRECTV NOW and Sling TV. Especially with Sling TV and PlayStation VUE having been around for a few years already. Hulu is doing a free trial of their Live TV service, so you are able to try it out before spending $40.