Hulu is going through some big changes.
A week after announcing a deal with Time Warner, the streaming platform is ending its free model. Hulu is also partnering with Yahoo, which was recently snagged by Verizon for a distribution deal. Its new service, Yahoo View, will provide five of the most recent episodes of shows from Fox, ABC, and NBC, as well as late-night and talk show clips.
In the last few years, Hulu has expanded its slate of original programming; it's no longer just a place to stream the latest episode of Law & Order: SVU. In a statement, Hulu Senior VP and Head of Experience Ben Smith elaborated on the move away from free streaming:
For the past couple years, we’ve been focused on building a subscription service that provides the deepest, most personalized content experience possible to our viewers. As we have continued to enhance that offering with new originals, exclusive acquisitions, and movies, the free service became very limited and no longer aligned with the Hulu experience or content strategy.
Hulu viewers will still be able to watch on site, just for a price comparable to Netflix's monthly fee ($7.99 a month with commercials or $11.99 without ads.) Or you can watch on Yahoo View, where there's free access to select shows. It's also integrated with Tumblr to offer a more immersive fandom experience.Hulu users will reportedly be notified of the change over the next few days.