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Hulu Will Soon Offer Live TV for Less Than $40

For that price, you'll get DVR functionality, channels such as CBS, and more perks to rival other streaming services.
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Hulu live streaming service

Hulu has teamed up with CBS to bring some of the network's live shows to the streaming service, offering cord cutters a compelling new option.

The deal means that Hulu will carry the CBS Sports Network (including NFL on CBS), CBS primetime shows, and Pop, a pop culture cable channel. Hulu, in turn, will reportedly pay CBS $3 to $4 per subscriber.

Unfortunately for viewers, Hulu will only get a few recent episodes of CBS primetime shows. To catch up on the entire current season of The Big Bang Theory or NCIS, you'll still need CBS All Access (from $5.99 a month), the network's own streaming service.

Pay Under $40 for Dozens of Channels

The deal comes on the heels of Hulu's agreements with 21st Century Fox, Disney, and Turner, adding dozens of channels to its launch-day lineup.

As part of its deal with CBS, Hulu will carry the CBS Sports Network, CBS primetime shows, and a pop culture cable channel called Pop.

At a reported sub-$40 price point that includes the current Hulu catalog, it's clear that Hulu intends to be a serious contender in the live streaming marketplace when the service launches in the first quarter of 2017.

How Hulu Compares to Other Live Streaming Services

As we reported earlier, AT&T, Sony, and Dish Network all offer live streaming services, but their prices, channels, and features vary greatly. While the details of Hulu's offering are still uncertain, it's not too early to draw some comparisons.

AT&T's DirecTV Now lists more channels than Hulu has announced. However, AT&T only offered the $35 introductory price for its Go Big plan to people who signed up by January 10. If you missed out, you'll have to pay an eye-watering $60 a month for that package of 100-plus channels. And unlike Hulu, DirecTV Now doesn't offer DVR functionality.

SEE ALSO: DirectTV vs. Sling vs. PlayStation: Which Live Streaming Service Is Best for You?

Dish Network's Sling TV starts out at a much lower price point than Hulu, but getting the channels you want can spiral into a dizzying spreadsheet of add-on packages. The costs and channel options vary depending on whether you get Sling Orange ($20), Sling Blue ($25), or Sling Orange + Blue ($40). And like DirecTV Now, Sling TV doesn't include widespread DVR functionality, though it is running a cloud DVR beta program.

Sony's PlayStation Vue may be Hulu's strongest challenger. It has a solid channel lineup at a competitive price point — $30 for the base package, $40 in some major metros — and working DVR functionality.

All three current services stream local broadcast affiliates in select markets, but whether Hulu will follow suit is anyone's guess. And while the three services offer an HBO add-on, we haven't seen one from Hulu — so your Game of Thrones fix will likely have to come from somewhere else.

What do you think, readers? How does Hulu stack up against what you want to see in a live streaming service? Are you happy with your current service, or are you interested in Hulu now? Let us know in the comments below!


Contributing Writer

Sean is a freelance writer and photojournalist working in the Hampton Roads region. He has been a writer, adventure motorcyclist, drag racer, data nerd, shade-tree mechanic, and tornado chaser. Recommend good beers to him on Twitter at @wxgeek.
DealNews may be compensated by companies mentioned in this article. Unless marked as a "Sponsored Deal," the opinions expressed here are those of the author and have not been reviewed or endorsed by the companies mentioned. Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).
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10 comments
BlueOak
Yawn. Wake me up when there's something interesting.

We already have a better (less compressed) picture with local free digital over the air for the networks. And also free several (definitely not HD) subchannels with movies and classic series.

But with very few exceptions network TV offers only inane brainless garbage anyway.

The quality series are originals from non-networks, several on Amazon Prime.
mlhudman
Do any of these options have Fox News?
Lindsay Sakraida (DealNews)
@B from C That's weird... I don't think I've seen any commercials with the no commercials plan. Maybe it depends on location?
cabubba
Thanks to dealnews I took advantage of the AT&T DirecTV $35 offer for 100+ channels. I am totally happy with that package at this time. It gives me more than enough programming to watch. I prepaid for three months and got a free Apple TV. Can't beat that deal!
Stevenlroberts
I subscribe to Hulu under the limited commercial option and i am eager to see the love streaming package they offer. Regarding the "no commercials" plan, some show distributors/content providers have signed exclusive deals with other outlets (i.e. Amazon or Netflix) to provide certain shows (i.e. Once Upon a Time) with no commercials. The means Hulu has no choice, but they limit the commercials to one before and one after the show. Since i never watch the credits, i never see the one after the show, and the one before the show is never more than 30 second long. I'm very happy with it.
Stevenlroberts
I subscribe to Hulu under the limited commercial option and i am eager to see the love streaming package they offer. Regarding the "no commercials" plan, some show distributors/content providers have signed exclusive deals with other outlets (i.e. Amazon or Netflix) to provide a show with no commercials.
eyeseeyou
Let me know when an official channel line up has been published.
B from C
Hulu's "No Commercials" plan still has commercials. Sure it has significantly fewer commercials but it still has some which completely defeats the extra $4/mo. When I complained to them about it they gave me some BS line about not having the rights to show certain titles without commercials but they did give me my $4 back.
virtio
I really like the current no commercials version of Hulu so I hope they continue to offer that option in the future with the new channels.
B from C
Is it still full of repetitive, annoying ads? That's been the deal breaker for me and the #1 reason I seek out alternative sources for online content.

Pay to watch commercials? No thank you. Give us a premium tier so we can pay to play without sitting through the garbage. Until then, piracy will continue to be the best option for entertainment.
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