Hulu Announces Offline Download Feature Will Include Ads for Users on $7.99/Month Plan

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, May 2, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    During its Upfronts presentation in New York City today Hulu confirmed that users will be able to download content from the streaming service and onto their mobile devices. This will let subscribers watch shows and films when not near Wi-Fi or a reliable mobile data connection.

    The streaming company also confirmed that its offline download solution will be an "ad-supported downloadable content experience" for subscribers of Hulu's standard $7.99/month Limited Commercials plan. Those who pay for the $11.99/month No Commercials option will still be able to avoid ads offline.

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    According to TechCrunch, this means that Limited Commercials subscribers will download commercials along with their shows, and "customers won't have the ability to fast-forward through these offline commercials." As of now, Hulu has not announced which shows will be available for offline viewing, but it's likely to be a limited assortment similar to Netflix's feature for mobile devices.

    Netflix originally launched offline viewing for many of its shows and some films in late 2016, opening up a new section on the iOS app for content specifically designated as "Available for Download." Showtime followed in 2017 with an offline viewing feature that supports the service's entire TV and movie catalog. Amazon, Starz, and Epix also support offline downloads, but HBO still lacks the ability. Hulu's will be the first to include ads.

    During the presentation, Hulu announced that it has reached 20 million subscribers across all of its business, including on-demand and Hulu with Live TV. That count is up from 17 million in January. Later this month, subscribers will also be able to tell Hulu to "stop suggesting" a show they don't have any interest in with a new button. "We want you to be in control of the experience. If you don't like something, you should be able to tell us," said Hulu's Head of Experience, Ben Smith.

    In regards to a launch date for Hulu's offline downloads, all the company said was that it will be available sometime during the "2018-2019 Upfront season," which should mean within the next few weeks.

    Article Link: Hulu Announces Offline Download Feature Will Include Ads for Users on $7.99/Month Plan
     
  2. stainless macrumors member

    stainless

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    Hulu was started by the studios and is exactly what they want... consumers PAY FOR ADVERTISING, unless we can extort more money from you! Allowing their greed to profit from EVERYONE... these is why torrents, pirates, etc exists!! When are they going to learn?
     
  3. tobefirst macrumors 68040

    tobefirst

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    I use Hulu way more often than any of the other services. This is a welcome addition, though one I won't use all that often. I'm in the no-commercials tier, so still no ads for me.
     
  4. Xavier macrumors 68030

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  5. Nozuka macrumors 68020

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    #5
    I had no idea they added a "no-commercial tier" now. I actually cancelled my subscription because of the ads.
    It hated getting ads on a service i pay for.
     
  6. mtneer macrumors 68030

    mtneer

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    #6
    Most of the shows on Hulu are produced with commercials in mind. Even if you are on their "no ads" plan, their shows go into pre-programmed interruptions every ten minutes or so, they just kick right back in. And then the show does a recap as though the audience came back from a commercial break. This breaks up the flow and gets annoying after a while. At least with an ad, you could walk away and get something to drink while the ads are up.
     
  7. WWPD macrumors regular

    WWPD

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    No commercial is so worth it, I wonder how long you can keep the downloaded content?
     
  8. Focusx0131 macrumors member

    Focusx0131

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    #8
    I’d assume as long as you have a paying subscription that’s not on hold.
     
  9. Westside guy macrumors 603

    Westside guy

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    Yup - when Hulu added the commercial free tier a few years ago, they got us back as customers.

    It’s the streaming service we watch the most, actually. I haven’t got around to cancelling Netflix yet, but we hardly watch that anymore - they’ve dumped the third-party stuff I like, and the main reason we have it still is my wife likes a couple British shows they carry (neither of us like their self-produced stuff).
     
  10. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    #10
    Hulu needs to announce they are reverting back to their old UI, or remaking the UI again to be actually decent.

    As it is currently, every day this UI exists is an insult to each paying customer.
     
  11. barkomatic macrumors 68040

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    Downloadable content has been extremely convenient for me and I'm glad Hulu is coming on board. I used to buy whos and movies for long flights and now that's not necessary at all--and I have much better content.
     
  12. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    #12
    Agreed. The way to fight internet piracy and win is to compete. People who pirate are willing to pay for convenience and a good experience. Nobody actually wants to fiddle with VPNs and seeding and trackers and NZBs and whatever - it just happens that going through all that crap today is still more convenient and a better experience than paying for content.
     
  13. tobefirst macrumors 68040

    tobefirst

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    #13
    What device(s) are you using and what don't you like about the interface? Just curious.
     
  14. lec0rsaire macrumors 65816

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    Pay-tv with commercials is something that Americans tolerate because it’s been that way so long that most haven’t experienced TV any other way. I think when paying money for TV, commercials are a disgrace. All paid TV should be like the HBO/Showtime experience. It is as abusive as showing ads in software that you have paid for.

    Hulu would just be following the model in place with On Demand services. Still it is outrageous that many people well north of $100-150/month for cable infested will commercials every 5 minutes. In Europe where Pay TV is not really popular except for watching football games they would think we are insane for paying those amounts for TV.
     
  15. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    AppleTV and iPhone.

    I don't like how there aren't icons per show - it's just a text list. I understand that the background changes based on the selection, but I prefer the grid-view of shows or movies so you can take all of that information in visually rather than scrolling and reading.

    I don't like that the way you know which item is selected because it has a line above it. That just goes against every UI principle we've all been taught. Underline the selected item. Overline though? Wht?

    Basically, this first image is a lot less informative than the second image.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  16. alllexx macrumors member

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    #16
    They've had no commercial for a long time, I've never seen an ad on Hulu and I've had it for a couple of years now
    --- Post Merged, May 2, 2018 ---
    You can still pause the show if you want a drink :)
     
  17. tobefirst macrumors 68040

    tobefirst

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    #17
    Thanks for sharing. That's more than a fair critique.
     
  18. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

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    #18
    Maybe but hate to break it to you -- paid basic cable back in the late 1970s had commercials too so paying for ads is not the new concept you seem to think it is. Not sure how Hulu's approach is anything different. Today basic cable is multiples of $7.99 and still has ads. Truth is those ads make it possible to have a $7.99 Hulu service. Check out the mins of ads on a Hulu streamed show vs on the network side. You get what you pay for here.
     
  19. jw2002 macrumors 6502

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    #19
    That may be true, but it does not apply to the younger demographic. This study that was just released:

    https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3166676

    shows that when a service gets infested with ads, the younger users will abandon it.
     
  20. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

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    I really hate the new Hulu UI. Too many clicks and swipes to get somewhere.

    For example, if my wife was on her profile, and I want to watch something on my profile's watch list, it takes like 10 clicks of the Siri Remote to get there and start watching something.

    I still use a few ATV3s, and the UI on those apps are so much better imo. I wish I could get them for tvOS.
     
  21. Rolvag macrumors regular

    Rolvag

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    #21
    Define “Infested”

    3-4 minutes of ads every 10 minutes of viewing time is “infested” imho. It would be acceptable to watch 2-4 ads per 30 minute show. I would rather wait another 6 months for the current season of Archer (FX) to come to Hulu than watch 4 minutes of ads every 7 minutes of an episode. TOTALY unbearable to me.
     
  22. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

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    #22
    I agree with this, especially since they have a ad-free option.

    But, I don't agree with comparing commercials from 4 decades ago to the ones today. Commercials today are much longer. Many syndicated shows from the 90's and earlier have to be edited to fill the allotted time when airing today.

    Friends is a good example, scenes are cut to allow longer commercials.

    So, not exactly the same.
     
  23. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    #23
    Don't even get me started on the top-row icons they use.
    upload_2018-5-2_15-52-58.png

    I don't think there is much of a problem about the third (search) and fourth (profile), although the magnifying glass looks like just a circle from far away.

    The first one looks like home plate. The second one is a checkmark in a box. The third one is a bunch of boxes, or a box with lines on it. How can they expect anyone to know what these mean? Ok, the first one could be some kind of home screen or maybe sports. But what do the second and third show? And what's the difference?

    I actually cancelled Hulu because of this crappy UI. It was too frustrating to use. I don't want to be fighting the UI whenever I am browsing content to watch.
     
  24. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

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    #24
    Actually that is not true. 30 years ago a first run broadcast 1 hr show had 15 minutes of ads. A 30 minute show had about 10 minutes. That hasn't changed much from today.
    --- Post Merged, May 2, 2018 ---
    And that may be true, but it's just a "starter" rate. It's not where Hulu intends customers to end up, and from your line, they won't, they'll spend a couple more bucks to not have ads just as they do with Hulu right now. Also a lot of the millennials "share" service with friends or family. They aren't paying the full boat or anything at all. My niece and nephew use their mom's Netflix, HBO login. That's the real problem for the streaming services.
     
  25. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

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    #25
    Do you have a source on that?

    A quick search shows your statement to be incorrect.

    According to Nielsen, it has not only increased, but it keeps on increasing.

    I found this in 10 seconds using the iPhone's Safari search, with many other results mirroring it. If I put some effort into it, I'm sure I will be able to find a breakdown of commercial times average by year.

    http://www.latimes.com/entertainmen...nielsen-advertising-study-20140510-story.html
     

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