Hulu launched its long-gestating live TV service during its upfront presentation Wednesday.
Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins announced that viewers who subscribe to the Hulu with Live TV (Beta) plan can watch live and on-demand programming from more than 50 sports, news, entertainment and kids' channels, as well as Hulu's streaming library. You may now be able to watch your local news on Hulu. At the moment, local ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC broadcast affiliates are available in LA, New York, San Francisco, Philadelphia and Chicago. Hulu is currently working with station groups to make deals to fill holes in other markets and will add more local channels over time.
The service will cost $39.99 per month.
This means live and on-demand content will be available from ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC, with local live broadcast affiliate programming immediately available in many markets, with more to follow; live sports from CBS Sports, ESPN, Fox Sports, NBC Sports and TNT, as well as regional sports networks available in many markets; news channels CNN, CNBC, Fox News, Fox Business and MSNBC; and cable channels Bravo, E!, Food Network, HGTV, Travel Channel, A&E, Cartoon Network/Adult Swim, Disney Channel, Freeform, FX, HISTORY, Lifetime, National Geographic, TBS, USA Network, Viceland and more. Showtime is available for an additional price.
It also grants access to Hulu's TV and movie library.
Missing networks in the live package include HBO, AMC Networks, Viacom's channels including Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and MTV, Starz, and Discovery.
It also includes 50 hours of DVR recording storage, and sports fans, take note: one of Hulu with Live TV's features is the ability to follow teams that Hulu will automatically DVR their games (subject to availability).
This looks like the first truly viable alternative to cable. "Hulu can now be a viewer's primary source of television," as Hopkins put it during the presentation.