HULU TO END FREE STREAMING SERVICE
Hulu is moving to an all-subscription model, eliminating the ad-supported service that let users watch thousands of TV episodes for free.
At the same time, Hulu has expanded its distribution deal with Yahoo, which is launching Yahoo View, a new ad-supported TV-streaming site with the five most recent episodes of shows from ABC, NBC and Fox — eight days after original air date — as well as other network shows, day-after clips, and full seasons of anime and Korean drama.
The move comes one week after Time Warner announced that it is paying $583 million to take a 10% stake in Hulu. Hulu is focusing on subscriptions to focus on competing with Netflix and Amazon Prime, its two key SVOD rivals. Hulu offers two subscription plans: $7.99 per month with commercials, and $11.99 per month without any ads.
Meanwhile, Yahoo is the midst of being acquired by Verizon in a $4.8 billion deal, which is expected to close by the end of 2016 or in the first quarter of 2017.
“Video is an important part of Yahoo’s strategy and we’re committed to delivering the best digital video content to our users. To date, we’ve streamed amazing experiences across sports, finance, and news,” said Phil Lynch, VP and head of media partnerships for Yahoo. “This partnership with Hulu is a natural extension of that strategy, bringing the best of TV & entertainment content to our lifestyle vertical.”
Yahoo’s new site, at view.yahoo.com, is available in the U.S. starting Monday. Mobile web and mobile apps will be coming soon.