Hulu Beta

The Ultimate Guide to Hulu’s Live TV Streaming Service


With plenty of on demand content streaming options, no one should struggle to find one that works for them. However, when it comes to watching live TV, the options are a bit more limited. Hulu has expanded its service to bring live content, in hopes of becoming the go to service for cord cutters.

The Basics

Hulu Live is the company’s answer to the rise of live streaming content. Currently, Hulu Live TV service provides access to over 50 live channels. Those channels include the basics like ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox, along with popular live channels including Lifetime, HGTV, and TBS.

A major draw to choosing Hulu is having access to the current programming offered by the service. In addition, to live content, you’ll have access to the library of content that includes past seasons of TV shows, recently aired episodes and Hulu originals like The Handmaid’s Tale and The Path.

A clean and simple menu allows users to quickly scroll through available channels by genre or network. The main menu offers recommendations based on viewing habits. Another section allows for personalization, where users can list favorite channels and shows.

With a subscription, you’ll be able to stream Hulu Live on two screens simultaneously, with the option of upgrading to watch on an unlimited number of screens. Another upgrade option gives access to more cloud DVR storage space, in addition to the 50 hours that comes with the basic package.

What’s Included

Hulu Live only has one basic package option, which costs $39.99/month. With that monthly subscription, you have access to the regular Hulu content, over 50 live and on demand channels, and 50 hours of DVR storage.

As with other live streaming services, Hulu Live offers the option of adding premium channels. For an additional monthly fee, you can choose to add HBO, Cinemax, or Showtime.

Supported Devices

Hulu Live subscribers have access to content on the following devices:

Hulu says Roku support is coming soon and has been beta testing a Roku Channel for a few weeks now.

What Sets Hulu Live Apart

The format of Hulu Live makes it a unique option among the competition. While other live streaming services attempt to mimic the experience of watching TV through a cable provider, Hulu has integrated their live service into their existing app. This format makes it incredibly easy for current subscribers to change their monthly plan and get access to live streaming content. The company has stated that they want the transition to the live service to be as seamless as possible for current users.

You will also find that Hulu has the most local channels compared to any other live TV streaming service. (You can find a full list of all the locals they offer HERE.)

You won’t find a grid layout to scroll through what’s currently on air. Instead, you’ll use a menu and sub-menus to search for content. The system might take some getting used to while you get used to going through multiple menus to find the live content you’re looking for.

Users will appreciate that a Hulu Live subscription comes with all of the regular Hulu content. That means access to past seasons of TV shows, recently aired episodes, a selection of movies, and Hulu original programming.

Updates and What’s Missing

Because the service is still new, the company is focused on taking in consumer feedback and making updates as needed. For now, that means handling buffering issues and making changes to the interface to make the service more user-friendly. While the setup is being praised for looking clean and modern, some users are finding issues with navigating to the content they want to see.

With Hulu’s existing content library and over 50 live channels, there’s a lot of content to choose from. Noticeably missing from the channel lineup is Viacom content, including channels like MTV and Comedy Central.

Hulu Live is still a new live streaming service, just sending out the first round of invitations to the beta version in January 2017. While the company listens to user feedback, makes updates, and continues to add more content, the live service will become an even more viable option for those who want to cut the cord without giving up live TV.

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