Turns out that yesterday's rumor that Hulu Plus would be coming to Roku's line of inexpensive streaming players was the real deal. A Roku spokesman said a Hulu Plus channel will launch later this fall and cost $9.99 a month.
That means viewers will have an easy--and approved--means of watching Hulu content on the big screen. Hulu and its owners--NBC Universal, Disney and News Corp.--have denied most attempts to port content from devices and PCs to television sets. But that changed with its Hulu Plus subscription service, which it launched in June. While Hulu says it's staying in preview mode awhile longer to ensure a quality experience for each Hulu Plus subscriber, and to responsibly scale the service over time, look for Hulu Plus to emerge from its cocoon of "invitation-only beta" soon. (You can request an invitation to Hulu Plus here.)
"We're thrilled to be able to provide Hulu Plus subscribers with the most inexpensive device to stream Hulu content to their TVs," said Anthony Wood, founder and CEO of Roku, Inc. "Hulu continues to be an amazing innovator in online entertainment, and Roku is an ideal platform to bring their content back to the living room and high definition televisions where it is best viewed."
Hulu Plus offers an array of TV shows, both current and classic, on a streaming platform to subscribers in the U.S. Through Hulu Plus, users will get every episode of more than 45 current hit programs from ABC, FOX and NBC like Modern Family, Grey's Anatomy, Glee, Family Guy, The Office and 30 Rock. In addition, Hulu users have access to full series runs and numerous back seasons of dozens of classic shows like The X-Files, Law and Order: SVU, Arrested Development, Saturday Night Live, Miami Vice, Ugly Betty, Quantum Leap, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Roswell and Ally McBeal.
But wait... there's more.
TiVo, the DVR that defined time-shifted TV viewing--but which has struggled to find a place in the new order--today announced it, too, will have a Hulu Plus channel "in the coming months." The downside? You'll have to pay a subscription fee for both TiVo service and the Hulu Plus offering.
Currently, consumer can access Hulu Plus via Hulu Desktop, Apple’s iPad, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, and 3rd generation iPod Touch (iPhones and iPod Touches need to be running iOS 4), Sony’s PlayStation 3, and select Samsung Internet-connected TVs and Blu-ray players. In addition to Roku and TiVo, Hulu says the subscriber service will be coming to select Internet-connected TVs from Sony Bravia and Vizio, as well as the Xbox 360 in early 2011.
- see this release from Roku
- see this release from TiVo
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