Hulu's live TV service won't break the bank, aiming for under $40

Mike Hopkins Hulu
Rob Latour REX Shutterstock

06 January, 2017

The deal will not only bring CBS to the streaming service, but also CBS Sports Network and Pop. Smithsonian Channel, the CW and Showtime will join the service later.

Under the deal, Hulu will get the company's sports programming, including its National Football League game broadcasts, and other live events like Grammys, as well as CBS Sports Network and POP, the entertainment channel CBS co-owns with Lionsgate.

Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins added in a statement: "To build a successful live TV service, you have to have viewers' favorite sports and shows - and CBS' programming is absolutely vital to that mix".

Set to launch early this year, Hulu's new streaming service will be competitively priced, with Hopkins noting that an entry-level package will fall somewhere in the $40 range, putting it in direct competition with DirecTV Now. Showtime will be offered as a premium subscription service add-on, as it now is for subscribers of Hulu's SVOD service.

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Should we see it with our own eyes we'll be sure to report back. Last November, AT&T made headlines when it launched its live-TV service, DirecTV Now, for $35 a month. "In addition, today's announcement represents another significant step in our strategy to deliver CBS's industry leading content to viewers whenever and where ever they want to watch it, at terms that are consistent with the Company's goals". That will include Hulu's library of on-demand videos as well. Hulu's TV streaming service is expected to launch sometime in the coming months.

Two other competitors - Sling TV and DirecTV Now - don't feature content from the popular network.

CBS already makes its programming available to Sony PlayStation Vue and plans to provide its CBS feed for an upcoming Google YouTube TV channel service. While exactly what channels customers will get for this price remains largely a mystery, Hopkins revealed that this monthly subscription fee will include Hulu's current on-demand offerings, which cost $9 to $12 per month, depending on your tolerance for commercials.

Hulu, with 12 million paying subs, houses shows such as "The Mindy Project" and "Seinfeld" and is owned by Twenty-First Century Fox, Disney and Comcast.

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