When it comes to balancing the series you need to watch to stay on top of office chit-chat — and having your favorite network shows at the ready — Hulu offers the best of both worlds.
In 2008, NBC officially launched Hulu in partnership with Fox’s parent company, News Corporation. In its first year alone, Hulu’s number of offerings increased from just a few dozen shows to thousands of shows and series.
In 2018, Hulu had 25 million paying subscribers, with that number projected to grow to 82.2 million by the end of 2019.
Compare Hulu packages
Hulu allows you to try out different subscription levels and add-ons for free, and you can switch back and forth between plans from month to month. Hulu’s on-demand plans offer free 30-day trials, while the Live TV options provide free 7-day trials.
|Hulu, Disney+, ESPN+ Bundle||Hulu + Live TV |
|Hulu + Live TV |
|Free trial length||1 month||1 month||None||7 days||7 days|
|Number of titles and channels||Thousands||Thousands||Thousands of titles and live sports||Thousands of titles and 60+ channels||Thousands of titles and 60+ channels|
|Cloud DVR storage||None||None||None||50 hours||50 hours|
|Number of simultaneous streams||2||2||2||2||2|
|Live sports streaming available||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes|
How much are Hulu plans compared to competitors?
Compared to other major streaming services like Netflix, whose plans start at $8.99/mo., or Amazon Prime, which is $12.99/mo., there are several Hulu packages and add-ons that give you access to awesome content for as little as $5.99/mo. for basic on-demand streaming with ads. Ad-free live TV streaming will set you back $50.99/mo., which is more expensive than comparable services like Sling TV, which starts at $25/mo. for entry-level live TV plans.
Is Hulu streaming right for you?
Hulu is ideal if you’re a cord-cutter but still want to watch network TV shows. It offers access to a wide variety of current and past seasons of shows like Brooklyn Nine-Nine, ER, Grey’s Anatomy, South Park, This is Us and more. Even if you’re not a regular network TV-watcher, there’s still plenty to explore in Hulu’s massive content library. Plus, its DVR capabilities make it a useful service for recovering DVR hoarders.
Keep in mind that Hulu doesn’t have as many movies as other services like Netflix or Amazon Prime, so if you fancy yourself a movie buff, this service may not be right for you.
Hulu’s sleek interface makes it easy for users to browse the catalog by actor, genre or type of content (like TV, movies, or Hulu originals). All of Hulu’s plans allow up to two screens to stream simultaneously, but if you subscribe to either of Hulu’s Live TV plans, you can add unlimited screens for $9.99/mo.
Most modern smart TVs, including iOS and Android models, support Hulu. If you’re working with an older TV, though, you may need to use supplementary technology to access the service. The desktop app gives you the same search and customization features as the TV-based interface. The Hulu Plus mobile app allows you to watch your movies and TV shows on the go, right on your smartphone.
There are a variety of devices that give you access to Hulu, including:
- Android phones and tablets
- Android TV (select models)
- Apple TV (4th generation or later)
- Echo Show
- Fire Tablets
- Fire TV and Fire TV Stick
- iPhones and iPads
- LG TV (select models)
- Nintendo Switch
- Mac and PC browsers
- PlayStation 3
- PlayStation 4
- Roku and Roku Stick (select models)
- Samsung TV (select models)
- VIZIO SmartCast TVs
- Windows 10
- Xbox 360
- Xbox One
While Hulu’s movie library is not as extensive as other competitors, the service still offers plenty of features to make your streaming experience enjoyable.
Set up multiple profiles
Hulu allows you to create up to six different user profiles.
Refine your queue with Tastepicker
Tell Hulu what types of shows, movies and genres interest you most, and Tastepicker will give you content recommendations.
Store your favorites shows
Use the My Stuff feature to saveTV shows and movies you want to keep track of or watch later.
Get tailored recommendations
Hit Like or Dislike to let the service know if you enjoyed a particular show. Hulu uses the information to suggest content similar to what you’ve “Liked” in the past.
Enjoy a better experience with Stop Suggesting
This feature comes in handy when you see content on Hulu that doesn’t interest you. Use the Stop Suggesting function to put an end to seeing a particular recommendation.
What to watch on Hulu
Hulu includes current and previous seasons of hundreds of shows and movies. You can browse by network, TV show, movie, genre, Hulu originals and more. There’s a huge bank of network content to choose from, including Bob’s Burgers, Family Guy, Modern Family, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Saturday Night Live and The Voice.
The service offers a variety of critically-acclaimed original television content like The Act, Castle Rock, Catch-22, The Handmaid’s Tale, The Mindy Project, Ramy and Shrill. It also has a growing list of original movies like Crime + Punishment, Frye Fraud, Minding the Gap and Too Funny to Fail.
There’s a reason Hulu is among the biggest players in streaming right now. Its huge library of third-party and original content makes it a draw for lots of viewers. Hulu’s movie library is not as extensive as some of its competitors, so if you pride yourself on being a cinephile, a streaming service like Netflix might be a better choice. However, if you’re a TV-lover and enjoy DVR and live TV capabilities, Hulu’s free trial is worth a spin.