Hulu Introduces Ad-Free Subscription Plan for $12 a Month

by

Hulu today revealed a new plan option that will grant subscribers immunity from the service's embedded advertisements by paying $11.99 each month instead of the traditional $7.99 (via Re/code). Available for new and existing users, Hulu's CEO Mike Hopkins notes that it took months for the various companies and providers available on the service to support the new subscription tier, but he still expects a "solid majority" of people to stick with the $7.99 option.

hulu new plan

Hopkins says getting the various rights owners for the Hulu catalog — which includes TV shows from NBC, ABC and Fox, as well as stuff from other networks, plus movies (note the Epix deal it just signed), plus stuff Hulu is creating on its own — to agree to the ad-free option took months.

Hulu is jointly owned by Disney, 21st Century Fox and Comcast’s NBCUniversal, and those companies are heavily invested in the business of selling TV ads. Hulu won’t come out and say this out loud, but the 50 percent price jump between the two versions is meant to give most of Hulu’s 9 million subscribers a reason to keep the version they have, and not hasten the erosion of the ad model.

A slight negative for some will come in the new tier's "exception shows," which will present users with bookended ads even when a subscriber is paying $12 per month. From ABC, NBC, and FOX, the seven exception shows are: New Girl, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder, Grey’s Anatomy, Once Upon a Time, Marvel's Agents of Shield, and Grimm. Perhaps a minor silver lining: the exception shows won't include the timed ads in the middle of a video and will only include a 15-second pre-show and 30-second post-show commercial.

Users interested in signing up for Hulu Plus, or changing their current subscription to the new option, can do so over on Hulu's official website. The Hulu app is also available to download free from the App Store [Direct Link].

Tag: Hulu

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
65 months ago
Wow, even the ad-free tier has ads. Brilliant.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
65 months ago
Pay $8 and you get ads?
Pay $12 and you still get ads?

This is as bad a deal as cable TV. It makes no freaking sense. Either give it to me for free with ads, or name your price and give it to me ad-free. Paying and still being subjected to ads is beyond ridiculous.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
65 months ago
"exception shows"? All set to pay more until I read that phrase.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
65 months ago
$4 more for no ads? Yes please!
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
65 months ago
Wait so no ads, except there are ads? Those are fairly popular shows
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
65 months ago
"No commercials" should mean no commercials. There can't be any exception if users are willing to pay higher price. I'm just glad Netflix has not caught up to this yet and I hope it never does.

Count me in. Only 1 of the 7 shows (with before and after commercials) is on my watch list so not a big deal. But hope this is temporary. I am surprised that they feel a small percent will jump on the no commercial price. The main reason I have DVR's is because I can skip commercials. Now I just need CBS All Access with a no commercial option and 90% of what I record will be covered.

That is just for now. In the future, they could add more "exclusive" shows and you may want to watch those shows.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iPhone Maker Foxconn Says China's 'Days as the World's Factory Are Done'

Wednesday August 12, 2020 7:55 am PDT by
China will no longer be the world's manufacturing epicenter going forward, according to Apple's largest supply chain partner Foxconn, which has been gradually expanding its operations in other countries amid the U.S.-China trade war. "No matter if it's India, Southeast Asia or the Americas, there will be a manufacturing ecosystem in each," said Foxconn chairman Young Liu, according to Bloombe...

Leaker Jon Prosser: Apple Watch and iPad Launching in September, iPhone 12 Event to Take Place in October

Wednesday August 12, 2020 4:31 pm PDT by
Apple last month confirmed that this year's iPhone 12 models will launch outside of their normal September timeframe and will be "available a few weeks later," which has led to speculation about when an event might be held. Leaker Jon Prosser, who sometimes shares accurate knowledge of Apple's plans, today said that Apple will hold its iPhone 12 event during the week of October 12, with...

Apple Takes Legal Action Against Small Company With Pear Logo

Saturday August 8, 2020 11:09 am PDT by
Apple is taking legal action against the developers of the app "Prepear" due to its logo, according to iPhone in Canada. Prepear is an app that helps users discover recipes, plan meals, make lists, and arrange grocery deliveries. The app is a spinoff of "Super Healthy Kids," and the founders claim that they are facing litigation from Apple. Apple reportedly takes issue with Prepear's logo, ...

Apple to Launch Bundled Subscription Services Called 'Apple One'

Thursday August 13, 2020 3:41 am PDT by
Apple will launch a new range of subscription service bundles called "Apple One" as soon as October, according to a new report by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The series of bundles would allow customers to subscribe to several Apple digital services together. This is expected to result in a lower monthly price than when the services are subscribed to individually. Bloomberg reports that the...

Apple Releases iOS and iPadOS 13.6.1 With Fix for Storage Issue and Green Tinted Displays

Wednesday August 12, 2020 1:31 pm PDT by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 13.6.1, minor updates that come a month after the release of the iOS 13.6 update with Car Keys and Audio Apple News+ stories. The iOS and ‌iPadOS‌ 13.6.1 updates are available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the updates, go to Settings > General > Software Update. iOS 13.6.1 addresses an issue that could cause...

Apple May Release 4G-Only iPhone 12 in Early 2021

Tuesday August 11, 2020 5:28 am PDT by
In a research note shared by Business Insider, Wedbush Securities analysts said that Apple may release a cheaper iPhone 12 in early 2021 with no 5G connectivity. Wedbush initially believed Apple would launch a mix of 4G and 5G iPhone 12 models this fall. Following re-examination of Asian supply chains, analysts Daniel Ives, Strecker Backe, and Ahmad Khalil revised the predictions,...

Apple Removes Fortnite From App Store [Update: Epic Files Lawsuit Against Apple]

Thursday August 13, 2020 11:58 am PDT by
Just hours after Epic Games introduced a new direct payment option for Fortnite that skirts Apple's in-app purchase rules, Apple has pulled the Fortnite app from the App Store. Fortnite is no longer available for download on the iPhone or the iPad, and Apple provided a statement to MacRumors on Fortnite's removal:Today, Epic Games took the unfortunate step of violating the App Store...

iPad Pro Keyboard Comparison: Logitech's $160 Folio Touch vs. Apple's $300 Magic Keyboard

Tuesday August 11, 2020 2:11 pm PDT by
Logitech recently debuted the Folio Touch, a keyboard and trackpad case designed for the 11-inch iPad Pro that serves as an alternative to the Magic Keyboard. In our latest YouTube video, we compare the $160 Folio Touch to Apple's $300 Magic Keyboard to see which is better. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Logitech is selling the Folio Touch for $160, while Apple's...

Apple Releases macOS Catalina 10.15.6 Supplemental Update With Virtualization Bug Fix

Wednesday August 12, 2020 1:20 pm PDT by
Apple today released a supplemental update for macOS Catalina 10.15.6, with the update coming a month after the original launch of macOS Catalina 10.15.6. The ‌‌macOS Catalina‌‌ 10.15.6 Supplemental Update can be downloaded from the Mac App Store using the Update feature in the System Preferences app. According to Apple's release notes, the update fixes a problem that could cause...

Kuo: Global iPhone Shipments Could Decline Up to 30% If Apple Forced to Remove WeChat From App Store [Updated x2]

Sunday August 9, 2020 10:17 pm PDT by
In a worst-case scenario, Apple's annual global iPhone shipments could decline by 25–30% if it is forced to remove WeChat from its App Stores around the world, according to a new research note from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo viewed by MacRumors. The removal could occur due to a recent executive order aiming to ban U.S. transactions with WeChat and its parent company Tencent. Kuo lays out...