Hulu has closed a deal with Yahoo to provide free, ad-supported episodes of TV shows for its Yahoo View site which will include the five most recent episodes of shows from ABC, NBC and Fox eight days after original air date.
As a result of this new deal though, Hulu is now moving to an all-subscription model – eliminating its ad-supported service that allows users to watch thousands of TV episodes. Hulu launched nine years ago with its ad-supported free service being a key element to its success.
Now though Hulu is all about its monthly subscription as it intensifies its competition with its SVOD rivals Netflix and Amazon Prime and prepares to launch a live-streaming TV service in 2017. In a statement, Hulu senior VP and head of experience Ben Smith says:
“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.”
The announcement comes in the wake of Time Warner buying a 10% stake in Hulu and Yahoo being in the midst of a multi-billion dollar to be acquired by Verizon.