One of the great tools if you are looking to ‘cut the cord’ and lose your Cable or Satellite TV contract is Hulu. For $7.99 a month you get access to loads of great shows on a 24-hour delay. My family loves Revenge, for instance, but seldom wants to be up until 11PM in order to watch it. Other shows such as Castle or Person of Interest just never seem to work with our schedule. So we depend on Hulu+ on our Roku every week to keep us up to date.
For my family Hulu+ is a convenience. You see, we have and use our cable subscription regularly. We don’t rely on Hulu as our main source for television. But for those who don’t want a cable subscription Hulu has been a great way to dump cable but still see most shows. Has… As in possibly past tense since a report last week from the New York Post and noted elsewhere challenges that.
The ‘Cut the Cord’ approach to television viewing typically refers to dumping cable and depending upon streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime for movies and TV series and Hulu+ for current TV shows. The theory is that – particularly if you have already dropped the landline phone service – you can save considerable money in the process. You see only what you want and get rid of the pricey cable subscription in the process.
For reference of how Hulu and cable are related, just note that Hulu – which currently has more than 31 subscribers – was created as a partnership between NBC (32%), FOX(31%) and Disney-ABC (27%), with equity partners holding 10%. When Comcast bought NBC-Universal many were concerned about the cable giant using that power to throttle user options – including involvement with strategic decisions about Hulu. In fact, the government made NOT doing so a stipulation of approval, but we are already seeing Senator Al Franken ask questions about other areas of potential conflict of interest for Comcast, and these allegations of using Hulu to shore up cable subscriptions bring further scrutiny about whether or not Comcast is respecting the terms of their NBC purchase.
So now what we are hearing is that Hulu will start requiring ‘authentication’. Or, in other words, they will require you to prove you are a cable (or presumably satellite) subscriber before you can use the Hulu+ service that you are paying for separately. I use the Time Warner Cable app which requires authentication – but that makes sense since I am watching cable channels on my iPad. But this is very different – this is a set of content holders working with one owned by a major Cable provider to try to stave off people cutting the cord while simultaneously making them pay for content.
What do you think? Have you been trying to cut the cord? Will this keep you from using Hulu – or cause you to drop them if they start requiring a cable subscription?
Source: Death and Taxes