It’s not a big surprise, but Hulu is raising the prices on its on-demand service. Starting on October 8, the price increase will be $1, bringing the ad-supported tier up to $6.99, and the ad-free tier to $12.99. It’s not a huge price increase – though it is a 17% increase on the ad-supported tier and 8% on the ad-free tier. But that means an extra $12 per year for Hulu.
The Disney bundle will likely get a price increase as well. Though, Hulu has not confirmed that just yet. Currently, it’s $13.99 for ad-supported Hulu and $19.99 for ad-free Hulu. Which looks very attractive now with these price increases on Hulu.
This follows Hulu Live TV getting a price increase last year, and ESPN+ getting one earlier this year. So it wouldn’t be too crazy to expect to see a Disney+ price increase in the near future.
Why the price increase?
Most companies don’t really tell us why they raising prices, other than a blanket “rising costs” explanation. Hulu does license a lot of content from other providers, and makes its own original content too. Between those two things, it’s likely raising prices to combat those costs. And production under COVID-19 rules likely didn’t make it easier or cheaper to do so.
But this is the first time that Hulu has raised prices in many years. Meanwhile, Netflix prices go up almost annually. With their cheapest plan now being $8.99. Almost twice what it used to be.
Hulu is the biggest part of Disney’s direct-to-consumer business, altogether it has 174 million subscribers by the end of the previous quarter. Hulu hasn’t been growing as fast as Disney+, but it has also been around for well over a decade. So that’s part of it. Disney+ meanwhile had 100% year-over-year growth. A lot of that can be attributed to its aggressive pricing and the pandemic.