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Monday, July 25, 2011

Hulu+ and Netflix Plans Scrutinized

In the two years I've been subscribing to Netflix, I probably watched all of a dozen DVDs. I had Drag Me to Hell (Unrated) for eight months before I finally watched it! (No reason, just kept forgetting I had it and was in no hurry to get it back.) So I'd been considering switching to the streaming-only plan for some time now. Netflix' recent price-hike made my decision for me.

Hulu+ and Netflix Streaming Only

I've also been considering a Hulu+ subscription since that was introduced, I simply haven't had the money. RiffTrax being available on Hulu definitely justifies the cost for me! But even if that isn't the tipping point for you, Hulu+ and Netflix' Streaming-Only Plan will run you $15.98 per month -- the same as Netflix' 1 DVD+Unlimited Streaming.

That's the best bang for your buck, if you enjoy TV as much as I do. I understand that Hulu+ still has commercials, but there is considerable content overlap between the two. Some may say that's a drawback, but my point is that you can find a lot of the shows Hulu+ has on Netflix if you want to avoid the commercials. Hulu+ has the newer episodes of your favorite shows though, most of which are available for a limited time shortly after they air.

TV aside, both sites offer movies, but Netflix (obviously) has the most, and the best. What Netflix doesn't have is original programming. Hulu is coming on strong with original programming lately, from a 5-minute morning show (The Morning After) to reality shows to their sci-fi series, Misfits and more.

Hulu+ and Netflix Limited

Way down at the bottom of the Membership Plans page, Netflix offers two Limited Plans, both of which would be perfect to round-out a Hulu+ subscription:
  1. One DVD, Limit: 2 per month - $4.99
    You can't use a TV device with this plan, nor can you access Starz streaming content, but you can watch up to two hours of streaming content per month, in addition to the two DVDs per month the plan covers. If you're into new releases, and/or your entertainment time is severely limited (and avid video gamers come to mind here, as well), this is a great complementary plan to Hulu+. At a combined price of $12.98, it's about as close to your old Netflix plan as you're going to get.

  2. Starz Play Only - $6.99
    This one's a bit steep with no DVDs and access to only Starz channels, but it's also a great complementary plan. Doubly so if there is a lot of overlap between the services in the shows you watch. Watch your favorite network programs on Hulu+ and grab some commercial-free movies and original Starz programming on the side.
Now, add your favorite podcasts and streaming internet radio to the mix and you could save yourself $50-100.00+ every month. Talk about cutting the cord!

© C Harris Lynn, 2011

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