Hulu to Launch Subscription Plan to ‘Train’ Users to Pay

April 22, 2010

(ChattahBox)—Nothing on the Internet remains “free” for long. Hulu, the popular go-to website for users to catch up on missed episodes of Glee, Lost and other programs owned by media companies News Corp., NBC Universal and the Walt Disney Co., is set to launch a premium paid subscription service. The paid Hulu Plus service would offer users access to a full archive of TV episodes for $9.95 a month.

According to the LA Times, users would still be able to view the five most recent episodes of most shows, such as Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons and V.

Although Hulu Plus is being billed as a test run, it’s not likely the two-year old company would go back to totally free content. The goal is to “train” users to the idea of having to pay for online content.

But don’t expect the paid selections to be commercial free:

“In the past, Hulu primarily offered shows that were broadcast over the air for free. But now, as the major networks are trying to extract payments from cable operators and television station groups, they can no longer justify offering the same shows online for free. Shows on Hulu also carry commercials, however there are fewer spots there than on regular television. Ultimately, Hulu is expected to adopt the same commercial loads as network television.”

Hulu’s paid subscription service will roll out in test markets beginning May 24.


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