Hulu ends free service and Yahoo continues it
Hulu will be ending its free, ad-supported service and go to an entirely subscription model.
In its place, Yahoo is picking up the slack.
Yahoo on Monday announced the launch of Yahoo View, a new platform that will host free, ad-supported TV episodes as Hulu once did.
It’s the end of an era for Hulu, which had been moving toward a premium service for a while by slowly amassing a respectable amount of exclusive rights as well as developing original series.
Hulu’s free service will go offline in the next few weeks. Going to an entirely paid model puts Hulu directly in line to compete with Netflix and HBO. Hulu recently brought on Time Warner as an investor, adding to previous owners Comcast, 21st Century Fox and Disney.
Hulu is reportedly readying a streaming TV service with live content to compete with Sling TV and Playstation Vue.
Yahoo View will be free to watch (as long as you can handle the ads) and feature the last five episodes of shows from ABC, NBC, FOX and other network sitcoms. Those episodes will be up eight days after first airing.
Yahoo View, which is technically a distribution partnership with Hulu, is also looking to become a social hub for fans of particular shows, featuring behind-the-scenes clips, recaps, GIFs and photos from Tumblr communities.
Yahoo View is available immediately on desktop, with mobile versions coming soon.
Yahoo recently struck a deal to be acquired by Verizon for $4.8 billion. Verizon has its own online video ambitions, most notably the Go90 platform. A Yahoo spokesperson declined to comment on whether TV episodes from Yahoo View could end up on Go90.