Last night, I canceled my subscription to Hulu Plus, which I’ve had for a couple of months.Why?
While Hulu did a fine job technically getting the service up and running, it just wasn’t worth the $10 per month I was paying.
Mostly because I never used it.
For my ~$10 per month, Netflix has proven itself a much better value, with a selection that better matches my taste, and the same or better presence on multiple devices (iPad, iPhone, computer, Wii, Roku, etc.).
My biggest problem with Hulu Plus is that the selection of TV shows doesn’t match up with my viewing taste. The Hulu Plus library is primarily broadcast TV shows, and I don’t watch much broadcast TV. I’m much more interested in cable programming, such as Food Network, HBO, Travel Channel, Discovery Channel, Cooking Channel, ESPN, etc.
Those cable shows are not on Hulu Plus, and won’t be soon.
That’s because cable networks, which get a huge percentage of their revenue from cable companies, and very little from online advertising, have little interest in giving their content to Hulu. They’re more likely to partner with cable companies’ web video sites, such as Comcast’s Xfinity, or with someone who will cut big checks for content deals, as Netflix is showing it’s interested in.
So, as long as I can watch several seasons of Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations” and Discovery’s “MythBusters” on Netflix, and not on Hulu Plus, I’m going to stick with Netflix.
Another problem is that the movie selection on Hulu Plus is pretty awful — especially compared to Netflix’s streaming service, which started with a similarly laughable movie selection and has since made big improvements.
The most popular movies on Hulu right now won’t turn any heads — sci-fi like “Ultraviolet” and “Gattaca,” lame sexy movies like “Kama Sutra” and “Strictly Sexual,” and even some movies from Lifetime. On Netflix, I can stream better movies like “Up,” “Amelie,” “The Big Lebowski,” etc.
Again, my personal preference plays into this a lot, so I’m not saying that Hulu Plus won’t be better for some/most people. If you want to watch broadcast shows like “Family Guy,” “Community,” “The Office,” etc., it may be a better value — especially if you want to use it on an iPad.
And as Hulu continues to grow — and perhaps IPOs to raise a bunch of cash, so it can buy more content — Hulu Plus could be worth another look.
But for now, I’m sticking with Netflix.
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