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Rumors of Hulu's Subscription Plans

CmdrTaco posted more than 4 years ago | from the only-a-matter-of-time dept.

Advertising 224

whychevron found a story discussing Hulu's plan to offer subscriptions. The rumor is that $10 a month will grant paying users the ability to get episodes older than the last five, while the current five episodes remain ad-supported. This starts pitting Hulu even more squarely against iTunes for anyone who watches more than a few shows a month.

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I'd pay it (5, Interesting)

FredFredrickson (1177871) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940866)

I'd pay for it - if they stopped being dicks.

That means, if I could watch it on my xbox 360 (either official support, or they stop playing cat and mouse with playon.) and put support for hulu on the roku.

Ever since the last update, playon has had to do a screen capture instead of decrypting the original stream. That gets far less performance and kills my server.

Also I have to point out that the article mistakenly compares paying $10 for hulu (on demand) vs just watching it on "tv for free". I wonder if the author of the article still lives in his mom's basement.

Re:I'd pay it (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940892)

I'd pay for it if they made it available outside the US.

Re:I'd pay it (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31940966)

Note: I work for a telecom regulatory body in Canada.

Hulu is being blocked at every turn. Certain companies in Canada are attempting to stop Hulu from entering the market.

Why not try a proxy? I run a private proxy on one of my servers based in the U.S.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941862)

There used to be a TV provider here in Toronto called Look. They offered a variety of networks at a dollar per channel. No required channels, no bundles, no tiered rates. You want the History channel and the Golf channel, and nothing else? $2/month.

I'm sure they ran into regulatory hassles and were crowded out of the market by Bell and Rogers. Delivery of the service by line of sight radio didn't help much either, I'm sure.

Re:I'd pay it (0)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940996)

Yep. About 3 hours from the US and I can't watch Hulu. Because of this, I can't have any opinion on the subject matter. It's depressing. Would I pay to use Hulu? I don't know, I haven't used it in the first place.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941236)

Want a free VPN tunnel so it appears you're in the US?

Re:I'd pay it (2, Informative)

Lord Byron II (671689) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941508)

lol, you'd better have a bunch of upload bandwidth to spare. I tried that when I was overseas and found that at low quality, Hulu needed around 50KB/s to remain stutter-free. Which is about double what my ISP gives me, so I spent a lot of time watching the buffer fill.

Re:I'd pay it (-1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941656)

WTF? They're delivering content to you, but need to use up 50% of my upstream? I call either fail or shenanigans.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

scot4875 (542869) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941720)

You are correct in that there is most definitely a fail here, but the fail is not by the GP/GGP posters.

--Jeremy

Re:I'd pay it (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941910)

Yeah, I was calling it on Hulu, not the poster(s).

Re:I'd pay it (0, Troll)

masshuu (1260516) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941790)

I know that there are allot of VPSs out there under $10 a month. there not screaming fast, but the company i get my vps through, allot of people buy a vps just for a vpn into the country. With it they can access allot of US only stuff like hulu.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

john83 (923470) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941338)

I'd pay for it if they made it available outside the US.

I wouldn't. I lived in the US for a while, and the streaming from Hulu was the worst I've seen for years. Not a patch on youtube, for instance.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

wtbname (926051) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941492)

I watch 5-10 shows a week on Hulu, streamed over DSL, then over the wireless router, and have never had a streaming problem. Once I thought I did, but it turns out the cat sat on the laptop.

Anyone else want to share their unscientific anecdotes?

Re:I'd pay it (1)

Faerunner (1077423) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941888)

I occasionally get skips in video (but not audio) when it's opening/buffering (so really, all it skips is the ad at the start). During actual streaming of the video I've rarely had a problem. Quality is good, audio is synced, and while I'm not thrilled by the in-browser screen size, it -does- fit perfectly on my netbook screen!

I'm satisfied with Hulu, although I doubt I'd pay for the service. If I get more than 5 episodes behind on any given show, I probably don't care enough about it to catch up, especially if it costs me $10 to do so.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941414)

Another vote here. $10/month and no ads, I'd pay it to access their content from he UK. I wouldn't pay anything for content with ads though - my time is worth more to me than it is to the advertiser.

Re:I'd pay it (2, Insightful)

Lord Byron II (671689) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941582)

Hulu has 3 to 4 ad breaks during a 30min show and each break is usually only 30 seconds long (a few are 15s and a few are 60s). So, if the show you're going to watch isn't worth two minutes of your time, then you might want to reconsider watching it in the first place.

I for one applaud Hulu for the way they handle the ads. Minimal, non-invasive advertising means that they are one of only a few sites that are on my AdBlock and NoScript white-lists.

Re:I'd pay it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941758)

The shows I watch are worth exactly 22, 44, or 48 minutes of my time, depending on their length.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941962)

But in the UK, their competitor would be iPlayer, which is both free and ad-free. If they want to make it a subscription service, then it needs to be better than the free ones.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

poopdeville (841677) | more than 4 years ago | (#31942046)

Until the BBC starts airing shows you can only watch on Hulu, Hulu has a monopoly on shows you can only watch on Hulu.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

iamhassi (659463) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941932)

Another vote here.

Same here, but $10 is too high, $5 is more reasonable, jumping from $0 a month to $10 a month is a huge increase. Before Hulu I would just download episodes, only thing Hulu does is save me the trouble of downloading. I really don't even have to search, programs like TED [www.ted.nu] notify me when a new episode is available, I just have to click "download". I could go back to living without Hulu.

But if they want $5/mo I want officially supported streaming to devices other than PCs, a free PlayON type program. And I better never see another ad if I'm paying them, not when they "generate over $100 million in advertising revenue in the first half of this year."

Re:I'd pay it (4, Interesting)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940948)

That's about where I'm at on it too. I like the idea of Hulu, but I simply don't want to watch TV sitting at my computer monitor. In the past I've kept a regular computer hooked to the TV and just used the regular interface to pull stuff up, but it's just gotten frustrating to keep a mouse and keyboard by the TV. If they can't integrate it into something I can use with a remote (Windows Media Center, MythTV, Xbox 360, anything), then I'm just not bothering. I'm ESPECIALLY not subscribing.

It's a shame though. If they managed to partner with some of these services I'd happily pay $10 a month for it. It beats the heck out of a $60 per month satellite bill.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

elbiatcho1 (1554817) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941084)

I use Boxee in this case as there is some integration made for Hulu.
Problem I see with Hulu is the limited number of shows (incomplete full seasons).

Re:I'd pay it (4, Interesting)

causality (777677) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941406)

I use Boxee in this case as there is some integration made for Hulu. Problem I see with Hulu is the limited number of shows (incomplete full seasons).

I wish they'd delete every 4-minute "excerpt" clip and use the space to host more complete episodes, myself. I never knew that brief clips from the middle of a show with little or no context were so popular, yet they are a large amount of the offerings on Hulu and a *majority* of the available videos on Adultswim.com.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

slaker (53818) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941122)

Get a Logitech Keyboard for PS/3, or one of these thingies [tomtop.com]

Re:I'd pay it (1)

Deag (250823) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941360)

I got an app on my phone that allows controlling of the keyboard and mouse on my laptop - I use it specifically for watching hulu with the laptop plugged into the tv.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

Jellybob (597204) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941344)

You can use Tuner Free MCE to get (rudimentary) integration between Media Center and Hulu. It's not great, but it's better then using a web browser from 10ft away.

Hulu Desktop, anyone? (1)

RulerOf (975607) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941562)

If they can't integrate it into something I can use with a remote

Uhhhh, dude... Hulu Desktop [hulu.com] was created explicitly for use on Media Center computers, complete with support for Media Center remotes.

And it's been available for some time now.

AND it runs on Linux!

....Personally speaking, I just wish that Hulu (or... anything that can offer a reasonable flat rate per month for that matter) would give better user experience and picture quality than the scene releases have for the last decade or so. We'll get progress some day.

Re:Hulu Desktop, anyone? (1)

poopdeville (841677) | more than 4 years ago | (#31942086)

Try Netflix. Good quality, 17,000 streaming titles, including thousands of seasons of television.

Re:I'd pay it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31940962)

I might pay if it worked in Konqueror. Hulu's one of the only sites I use Firefox for, and I'd rather stop.

Re:I'd pay it (4, Insightful)

Fnkmaster (89084) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940990)

Completely agreed - I'd pay it too, if they'd put it on my Roku. I love Roku and all the Netflix and Amazon content (and some of the other content is okay, but not exactly worth much), but it would be *the* killer set-top box with Hulu content.

However, the problem as I understand it though isn't that Hulu are being dicks, it's that the licensing terms they've been able to negotiate simply don't allow them to put content on set-top boxes or even make it easy for set-top boxes to access that content.

I just don't think big media is going to let that content go to Roku or any equivalent set-top box. I mean, you'd have people canceling their subscriptions to cable right and left if that started happening. You can do it now, but you need an HTPC setup and to navigate to Hulu via a browser, and that's not quite mass-market.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

KingSkippus (799657) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941012)

I'd pay for it - if they stopped being dicks.

It's all relative. Your average American pays $50 to $60 for cable service that doesn't allow them to watch back episodes, then tacks on hefty additional fees if you want something like a DVR that will allow you to watch shows independently of their normal timeslot.

Is it less than ideal? Yeah. But as long as Big Content is involved, "ideal" is a pipe dream, and Hulu is a hell of a lot better than what we've got now. I'll probably be signing up.

Re:I'd pay it (2, Interesting)

slaker (53818) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941066)

I thought it was totally sweet that Hulu worked under Skyfire on my phone. For the couple weeks that I could do that. I listened to two weeks worth of the Daily Show (also not on Hulu any more) during a long-ish car trip and it was fantastic.

I would expect to see device support, just like Netflix has added device support, for paying customers. We don't all have a PC in our living room to best leverage Netflix (I do and I'm sure a lot of other Slashdotters do too, but probably a lot more people have an Xbox or something).

Also, it kind of sucks that with a 70Mbit connection to the internet at home, hulu can't reliably deliver 480p streaming content to me. I expect that would need to change for paying subscribers, too.

Re:I'd pay it (1, Troll)

WhoIsThePumaman (1182087) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941110)

I'd pay for it if they brought back The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

Re:I'd pay it (0)

Sporkinum (655143) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941544)

With analog cable TV, I record those shows every night with windows media center. We then watch them the next day through the xbox 360. I can also copy them to my Creative Zen Touch 30 to watch on airplanes, etc. No charge for format shifting, unlike itunes.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 4 years ago | (#31942084)

I'd pay for it if they brought back The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

That's more Comedy Central's call, sadly.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941182)

If they dumped the ads, I would be interested.

I can already do streaming of old shows with Netflix. However, Hulu is more Linux friendly despite all of their nonsense trying to supress Boxee and whatnot.

Re:I'd pay it (2, Insightful)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941426)

This is EXACTLY why I refused to give PlayOn money. They have no control over when someone else is going to pull the plug.

Re:I'd pay it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941538)

Also I have to point out that the article mistakenly compares paying $10 for hulu (on demand) vs just watching it on "tv for free". I wonder if the author of the article still lives in his mom's basement.

I watch plenty of programs on TV for free. I have this gadget called an "antenna." It picks up broadcasts and doesn't cost a dime! I suppose technically I'm still paying for electricity, but even using Hulu I have the same problem.

Re:I'd pay it (1)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941982)

vs just watching it on "tv for free". I wonder if the author of the article still lives in his mom's basement.

Antenna maybe?

Cheaper and better than cable (5, Interesting)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940890)

For some people this really is a great alternative to cable.

It might even be better for networks. Fox said they make more money from Hulu on Simpsons episodes than they do from airing them on TV. And that was before this subscription revenue model existed.

If it wasn't for sports, I'd consider canceling cable/sattelite and just watching content via the internet.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940946)

I've actually been fielding questions from quite a few coworkers over the last three or four months about plugging computers into their TVs. I know one co-worker who watched the entire 2010 Olympics online, and was able to view the events she and her husband wanted rather than having to put up with whatever the network decided to broadcast.

Frankly, I think if the networks could get their shit together, and if they charged a reasonable fee, they could probably kill cable in a few years. For ten or fifteen years people have been wanting to be able to watch what they want to watch, even if it means a fee. I'd give a lot to just be able to say "Remember that episode of Seinfeld where Jerry is screwing his made" or "Hey, wouldn't it be great to watch that Star Trek episode Doomsday Machine!"

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (2, Insightful)

characterZer0 (138196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941144)

You forget that the cable companies are the ISPs. They would either raise their ISP rates so it would be just as profitable for them for you to get your shows through the Internet band as through the cable TV band or they would block Hulu.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

FieroEtnl (773481) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941000)

I already cut my family's cable subscription. The only stations we were watching outside of the broadcast networks were sports stations, Comedy Central, Food Network, and HGTV. Hulu (and some other online sources) lets us see most of the shows we want to see, and the ad content is much easier to handle than on actual TV. And as for sports stations, if I really want to watch a game, I can make a trip to a sports bar for the day and still come out ahead.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

Nakor BlueRider (1504491) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941120)

I would love to be able to do that. Sports leagues are starting to offer their games online, but generally blacked out in any area where there's an existing regional television contract. If I could get local sports live and online without the blackouts, that would be the end of paying for cable for me.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941222)

With MLB.TV you can get every MLB game online for $99 a year. I bought the audio package with my Red Sox Nation membership, so I can listen to every game on my phone/radio/computer. I believe the NBA has a similiar package for watching every NBA game over the internet.

My college football team allows me to watch Husker games online, but the broadcast isn't all that great.

I'm shocked the NFL is behind the times on this.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941438)

This is a good start, but it needs to go further. I probably wouldn't be interested in paying for every baseball game, but I would be interested in paying less just to receive the games of the teams I care about. Same thing with football. I'd be interested in DirecTV Sunday Ticket, but not if I have to pay however much it is for every team, when I only really care about Green Bay.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

The Moof (859402) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941148)

If it wasn't for sports, I'd consider canceling cable/satelite and just watching content via the internet.

That's actually what I've done.

Anything on TV I want to watch is typically available on Hulu (or the network's site) for a few weeks after airing. For sports, I've resorted to either listening to/streaming radio or going to the bar with friends to watch. If you're concerned about sports coverage on non-local teams, You'd be surprised what Internet streams are available for radio stations... Usually, the teams' pages will have the link for the streaming audio.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

Sir_Dill (218371) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941388)

It might even be better for networks. Fox said they make more money from Hulu on Simpsons episodes than they do from airing them on TV.

Yes...so the content "owner" makes money by squeezing hulu, but how much does Hulu make airing said episode? I imagine simpsons episodes are relatively popular and probably garner higher ad-prices as well as viewership but it will be interesting to see how this plays out and also how net neutrality figures into this.

All its going to take is an ISP throttling bandwidth passing from Hulu because it is causing "Network Congestion" before its a lawsuit. Personally, I think its going to be a hell of a show when it happens.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (4, Funny)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941448)

All its going to take is an ISP throttling bandwidth passing from Hulu because it is causing "Network Congestion" before its a lawsuit

It's a brave corporation that is willing to get between an American and his TV...

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941524)

not wuite correct.

The make more money per viewer on Hulu, not more money over all. The advertising dollars they get from Fox is a lot more in real dollars.

Re:Cheaper and better than cable (0)

notbob (73229) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941788)

Hulu is one of the main ways we've survived without cable tv for YEARS.

I miss a few things like history and learning channels but once the hulu type concept gets larger I'm sure we'll be able to get all our content on demand like it should be for reasonable costs.

I don't think any of us has a problem paying something towards the cost of creating content, just not exorbitant fees. $10/mo is livable, I'd rather pay for lifetime access to the shows I want though, like give me lifetime access to say battlestar galactica for $10 or the like, I only have an interest in a few of their shows.

What'd be amazing is if we ever get to the point where how many paid subscribers there are helps keep the show going, i.e. like battlestar or a star trek with enough fans could it economically restart / continue shows?

No money without TV support. (1)

John.P.Jones (601028) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940910)

For free ad supported content I'll put up with the process of plugging in the laptop to the TV but if they want money they better open it up to set top boxes like Roku, PS3, X360 etc.

Meh. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31940920)

The pirate bay still has less rules, restrictions, and offers more. For a much lower price.

What is the value of something that can be replicated perfectly. Forever. For free?

Exactly...

Re:Meh. (5, Informative)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941002)

Because the odds of me getting a letter stating that I need to deliver my left nut to the MPAA's legal department or be run over by their legal team are considerably less likely going through something like Hulu than TPB.

Re:Meh. (2, Interesting)

PhreakOfTime (588141) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941178)

I find it fascinating that after the business model that you just described, that you still want to give these people money.

Re:Meh. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941054)

In today's America, the wants and desires of consumers are irrelevant. Consumers do not define value, either. Corporations dictate what the consumers want, and then provide it to the consumers at the prices that the corporations find desirable.

Re:Meh. (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941476)

For me, at least, its faster to watch something over Hulu than it is to wait however long for it to download from TPB or wherever. It may not be in pure HD, but its usually good enough for me. Now if I could pay $10, get access to the back catalog, and get higher quality streaming? I would be happy.

About time! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31940926)

About time. They've got the infrastructure, and I will trade money for not watching their stupid commercials.

Re:About time! (1)

vcgodinich (1172985) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941132)

They will probably start adding in commercials to the paid content in a few years, just like they started adding in 2 minute commercials that you have to click to bypass, just as youtube started adding commercials, just as you pay for cable / satellite and they still have commercials. not saying $10/ month isn't worth it short term, but i have started looking for another site to watch shows from, this is the beginning of the end.

Ads (5, Insightful)

Varkrag (1795682) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940974)

Sorry, but if I became a paying subscriber I would expect ad free viewing on all content.

Re:Ads (1)

PhreakOfTime (588141) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941138)

Like cable? Or like satellite?

Re:Ads (4, Informative)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941454)

Once upon a time the promise of cable TV was that there would be no commercials.

Too bad TV viewers are mostly lazy, because when they started airing commercials on paid TV, no one seemed to get outraged about it.

Re:Ads (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941680)

When? I remember hearing that from people back in the day, but I don't remember any company every saying that about multi channel cable.

I do believe 'ON' TV did that ('77), but they just showed movies. Man, it was a box on your tv with a knob in the middle with two selections "On' and 'Off'. That was it.

When we got cable TV it had commercial on your standard channels. That was in 78, when it was new.

Re:Ads (1)

PhreakOfTime (588141) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941906)

Wow. OnTV. There's a flashback

My neighbor had that, except if I remember right, it had an 'A' 'B' and 'C' setting on it. But that might have been the way he had it setup to connect to the TV itself.

Re:Ads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941160)


Sorry, but if I became a paying subscriber I would expect ad free viewing on all content.

Like with cable?

Re:Ads (1)

characterZer0 (138196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941186)

Sorry, but if I became a paying subscriber I would expect ad free viewing on all content.

Just like with Cable TV.

Re:Ads (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941386)

..and for $10/month how about the ability to download things for offline viewing?
..or the ability to view from mobile devices (ya know, like their advertising claims)?

Lame that they (1)

siliconbits (943161) | more than 4 years ago | (#31940992)

Are not coming to the United Kingdom Yet!

Re:Lame that they (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941270)

Lame and silly. Surely there's a market here? The longer they leave it, the more we'll get used to... "sharing"... content, sans money or ads, instead of them making money from our eyeballs.

Re:Lame that they (1)

siliconbits (943161) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941296)

maybe they're afraid that Canvas and iPlayer kick their balls. JJ, seriously we need to get "family guy" and the likes on VoD

Re:Lame that they (1)

DaveGod (703167) | more than 4 years ago | (#31942076)

Hulu are coming to the UK [telegraph.co.uk] once they get the agreements sorted out, much of which appears to be the fault of our broadcasters.

Though, personally I think "exclusive content deals" are against the concept of internet distribution anyway. I'm not subscribing to anything unless I can get everything. If anyone has exclusive stuff then they all have exclusive stuff.

Online TV should be about the quality of service in the distribution. Soon as they start with the exclusivity crap they're making the whole industry less appealing for the consumer just so that their individual company can be relatively better than the competition. I can understand Hulu doing this, but for the TV companies it's folly. Their objective is long term, grow the market and do not above all let any distributor like Hulu take control. That means no exclusives.

Netflix has a better plan for only $8.99 (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941018)

Netflix has streaming available with any of their plans including the $8.99 one disk at a time. Granted some series are only available on Hulu, but Netflix has a good selection of movies that Hulu doesn't.

Re:Netflix has a better plan for only $8.99 (1)

space_jake (687452) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941450)

And it works on your TV through all current gen consoles. I don't know of a way to use Hulu through a PS3.

Re:Netflix has a better plan for only $8.99 (2, Informative)

keytoe (91531) | more than 4 years ago | (#31942068)

By the very nature of how they acquire their content, Netflix on demand doesn't have the current season of shows. Hulu does.

Yay, hope Hulu dies soon (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941126)

Cant watch Hulu for shows that are not even sent to my country, so phuck them if they want to kill themselves by charging.
Now excuse me, got to get back to downloading shows without ads.
Idiots.

International Hulu? (5, Insightful)

l2718 (514756) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941254)

The real news we are all waiting for is for Hulu to start offering world-wide viewing.

In the pre-internet world where movies and TV programs were received by radio or cable or seen in a theater or rented on a videocasette it made sense for the rights holder to subdivide the rights based on location -- to license separately in each country. But this makes no sense for internet broadcast. You would think that in the future rights owners would exclude internet rights from the licenses which are exclusive in a geographical region (thus allowing services like Hulu to license world-wide internet rights), but this doesn't seem to be happening. Instead, the internet broadcast rights are included in the country-specific deals, which generally means that potential viewers outside the US get no service.

By the way -- this is why I feel no compunction about downloading "pirated" versions of shows that are not available in my country. If the studio refuses to sell me a product, they can't complain when I don't pay for it ...

Re:International Hulu? (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941522)

I'm guessing they feel the licensing fees they get from the regional station for rebroadcast is more than they project they'd get from Hulu ad viewing (and presumably paid subscriptions). If they were to exclude internet broadcast, and bring Hulu to those countries, the amount they'd get from those regional stations would go way down.

Re:International Hulu? (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941816)

That happens because of laws from difference country regarding contracts, 'moral codes' and what not. I said this when the introduced region codes, and I'll say it agin:

They shot them selves in the foot. no region codes means you can make you movie, sell it where ever it's allowed, and make it easier for people in countries that can't buy it to gain access. That drives the demand for more shows up. Plus when a populace ha a generation go by where people have been getting around movie rules, the movie rules don't matter. It also is a large driving factor behind what they don't want. People finding other ways to get movies.

Re:International Hulu? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31942044)

"Regionalization" never made sense to anyone but the distributors maximizing profit.

Backwards (1, Insightful)

Triv (181010) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941256)

I don't care about getting episodes older than the last five. I care about getting current episodes without having to wait a week. That, I would probably pay for.

I also can't help but wonder if they're going to be including ads on the subscription model or if they think the access alone is worth 10 bucks.

Re:Backwards (1)

tonycheese (921278) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941792)

All the shows I watch regularly on Hulu are up 3-5 hours after they air on television (Simpsons, Family Guy and in the past the Daily Show and Colbert Report).
The only shows I know of that are on a 7-day delay are anime which are sent over and subbed. If there are any shows on a 7-day delay, I don't know about them/watch them, and it's most likely the station's choice and not Hulu's.

I find it strange that there are still ads on the subscription model, though...

No more buffering??? (2)

John Whitley (6067) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941290)

Forget old episodes, the "killer" feature they need to offer is the ability to handle prime-time streaming volume. Netflix streaming seems to have this down cold, but Hulu is almost unwatchable at times.

Re:No more buffering??? (2, Interesting)

nextekcarl (1402899) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941378)

What time do you find the most difficult? I've yet to see a this buffering problem so I'm guess it must be the times I watch, but since I tend to watch in the morning and early afternoon. But I've watched at other times and haven't seen a problem then, either, so maybe it is regional?

Re:No more buffering??? (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941456)

Hell, most nights im pulling down 2 HD netflix streams perfectly. Netflix has got their shit together. Its sad that The Office on netflix is 10 times better then the NBC.com experience.

Re:No more buffering??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941770)

Silverlight. Flame away.

Re:No more buffering??? (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941742)

The killer feature would be streaming sports.

Pay for ADS ? (1)

viamptor (1777236) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941332)

The article says that the last five episodes will still be ad supported and that you get (more)older episodes if you pay. So it seems you have to watch ads EVEN IF YOU PAY on the newest episodes? If thats the case you can count me out. I will pay for completely ad free content or ill pay for my content by watching ads but i wont do both.

Android... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941342)

If it supports android, I'm in.
Watch everywhere. Compete agains iTunes. I'm good.

64-bit flash (2, Interesting)

Kev Vance (833) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941396)

Meanwhile, Hulu hasn't worked with the 64-bit flash plugin since January...

Re:64-bit flash (1)

frnic (98517) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941512)

Somehow this HAS to be Apples fault...

i'll just use Netflix or Blockbuster streaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941398)

If I want to watch old episodes, without commercials, I'll use Netflix or Blockbuster streaming. For me, hulu.com's only value over those is that it *is* free. Free and more current. And, frankly, I think that if they want more money they should just add more commercials. I mean, I watch TV programs live, already, with fifteen minutes of commercials and yet hulu.com just does, what, 1.5 minutes of commercials?

People have called me a "dolt" since I'm willing to sit through commercials although if saving $10.00 / month makes me a dolt, so be it. I'll be richer for my efforts. And sure, $120.00 / year, isn't a lot, but if you take that attitude with other services, as well, it adds up. But I suppose the concept of actually saving money is a bit foreign to people who live pay check to pay check and are thousands of dollars in debt.

Needs to support mroedevices and HD (1)

postmortem (906676) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941440)

720P or similar should be given to paid subscriptions, it does look a lot better on HD boxes.
Amazon and iTunes do it.

Any internet capable device that can do Netflix (blue-ray players, all gaming consoles) should be able to play Hulu too, cuz you do want to watch this on TB, not on computer screen (yes, we geeks connect laptops/HTPC to TVs, but not everybody does).

I have a better idea... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31941510)

I already pay for their content via a cable subscription and a high-speed internet subscription. Why not give me unlimited access, you know, since I am already paying to receive the content. One of the original selling points of a cable tv subscription was supposed to be the absence of commercials. Can anyone tell me how that has worked out? Call me skeptical, but I don't see the subscription model remaining commercial-free forever. TV will be commercial-free when advertisers realize that we don't want their products, which is to say, never.

I told you so (1)

c0d3g33k (102699) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941704)

Here's to all the folks over the last several years that gleefully announced they were ditching their services (cable, satellite, whatever) and just getting it for free online. My usual response was that once they get you on board, they will start charging for it at some point. No more free tv and flipping a bird to the 'man'. I guess I was right.

Pay? only if (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941732)

they offer 720p or better, improve streaming, show all the episodes in a series, open up the front end so anyone can create an interface.

Hulu + Netflix = no need for tv (1)

Azureflare (645778) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941768)

When will the broadcast industry get a clue and realize that broadcast television is dead? (tivo style devices already prove this)

When that happens are we going to see increases in our internet connection price? I'm worried that the current price we see is subsidized by TV lines.

ITMS really (1)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941774)

I think it puts HULU more against Netflix than ITMS.

Until their service is better ... (1)

Kostya (1146) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941850)

Until they improve their service, forget it. Even on low, I have a hard time getting non-choppy feeds at time.

Compare this to Netflix On Demand which has better quality all around--and doesn't have any commercials.

I wish Apple would start to compete on price here--it's about the same to buy some of these shows on DVD. Granted, iTunes is available right then during the series airing, but I shouldn't have to pay $50-60 to watch something in high def. If they lowered the prices, I would buy a ton of series just for the convenience. As it is, I'm skipping the series all over--and usually remembering I might have liked them when I see it on Netflix.

Which means everyone just missed out on a chance to make me part with my money. iTunes worked because of the magic $0.99/$9.99 price point (which has fluxed a little, but is still around there). They never found the right price point for TV (or movies), and neither of those has taken off quite as well as music.

And for those wondering:
  * Movies: $4.99 - $6.99 (not $9.99 - $14.99)
  * TV Series: $15.99 - $25.99

Yes, yes, I'm sure someone is going to scream robbery, but these are *digital* goods. Make them once, sell them over and over and over again. You still have advertising on TV (and Hulu). Give people a reason to buy the digital forms and they would buy them (and probably not pirate as much--convenience is an amazing motivator, and say what you want about iTunes it is unbelievably convenient).

And while I'm ranting, Yo, Apple ... what's up with AppleTV being such a freaking wasted opportunity? Here's a clue:
  * Streaming like Netflix. You already have the infrastructure for rentals, why not get in on the action?
  * Or some subscription model around the price of a cable/satellite bill ($60/month?)
  * And what about Apps? The thing runs Mac OS X (more or less)--make an App market for it.

Oh well.

I guess we're in the minority here, then... (1)

sdnoob (917382) | more than 4 years ago | (#31941860)

We wouldn't pay for Hulu if the only perk was being able to watch episodes that would've fallen off the regular rotation due to newer airings (older than 'last 5 to air')

There's still no guarantee that they (Hulu or content owners) won't pull a series or episode before you get a chance to watch it, or that they'll include captions for everything (like we get with anything we record on our Tivo).

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