Hulu gifts its users like and dislike buttons to aim at recommendations

The new like and dislike buttons are similar to a feature the company was still testing in 2018. (Hulu)

Just like an appreciative nod or glazed-over stare can provide feedback on content recommendations in the real world, Hulu’s new like and dislike buttons can now do the same on its streaming service.

The buttons, which Hulu will roll out over the coming months, give users more direct input on the recommendations served to them on the platform. When they “like” a show or movie, Hulu will suggest titles and shows that are similar to what they’ve liked. When they “dislike” a show or movie, Hulu will make sure they don’t see that title again.

The feature is rolling out today on; Amazon Fire TV devices; Xbox One; Nintendo Switch; select LG, Samsung and Android TVs; Vizio SmartCast TVs; and Google Chromecast. The company said other devices will get the feature soon.

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The new like and dislike buttons are similar to a feature the company was still testing back in 2018.

Hulu also plans to improve the home experience for each user by displaying the most relevant collections for them and ordering them based on their watch preferences. The company said this will make finding movies and TV faster, and it will deliver more diverse and relevant collections on the home screen.

Hulu is also working on making search easier on its platform by accommodating for common misspellings or abbreviations that users search for, along with updating its recommendation engine to build collections tied to what users watched in the past and refine suggestions for content that’s Up Next.

The coming features follow updates that Hulu made over the summer to the recommendation engine, including adding data about when and on what devices Hulu users watch content.

“At Hulu, we’ve always taken a unique approach to recommendations. It’s a combination of human curation, empowering our viewers, and algorithms that round out the personalized experiences we deliver to Hulu subscribers,” wrote Jason Wong, director of product management at Hulu, in a blog post.