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Hulu+ Live TV leverages Disney alliance, jacks up cost

Hulu+ Live TV announced a big pricing increase from $44.99 to $54.99 per month on Friday. The subscriber fee bump will take effect on December 18.

This comes on the heels of a bundle deal featuring Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+ for a reasonable $12.99 per month. That package is just basic Hulu, not its live TV element, but the strong streamer is using its Mouse House alliance as leverage.

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It’s not as sinister as it sounds.

Product versatility = freedom of choice

For those already loyal to Hulu+ Live TV, customers know the service is nearly second to none. It offers all the major broadcast networks, and still offers monthly flexibility.

In the news release Hulu posted on Friday, it summarized its genius business model, which is ultimately consumer-friendly:

Price changes are never easy to stomach, and we know that many people don’t watch live television year-round, so we’ve made it easy for Hulu subscribers to switch back and forth between our plans to best suit their needs. If you love college football, choose Hulu + Live TV during the season, then switch to one of Hulu’s less expensive on-demand plans when it’s over. If you enjoy most of your TV on demand but really want to watch live election news, just switch to Hulu + Live TV for a few months.

Hulu

Those who want access to Hulu’s exclusive original series and impressive catalog of movies can do that. Then, for specialized events, people can subscribe for a month at a time to the Live TV side.

Generally speaking, people like options. I don’t mean the sensory overload or indecision that occurs from searching thousands of movies and deciding what to watch. No, this is a uniquely versatile offering from Hulu.

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Everyone wins in this situation. Yes, it may cost a little extra, but at least it’s not like Hulu+ Live TV is roping people in longer than they want to be. It’s essentially a pay-as-you-go plan, as opposed to being locked into a cable contract. Some of those can be really binding and downright nasty to cancel.

Disney going hard in the “Streaming Wars”

Hulu+ Live TV is firmly among the best cord-cutting streaming services for sports fans. But now casual sports fans who are used to going to ESPN only can get exclusive content on ESPN+ in the aforementioned bundle.

Disney assumed full control of Hulu in an acquisitions deal with Comcast. This isn’t a coincidence that the Hulu Live TV package suddenly spiked its costs just after the Disney+ streaming service launch.

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It’s a coordinated effort by Disney to essentially have its cake and eat it, too. Hulu’s basic package will welcome all kinds of new subscribers thanks to its bundle affiliation with Disney+. It’s a convenience thing.

When Hulu went under the Disney umbrella, you’d be forgiven for thinking, “What a sellout!” Well, it seems like Hulu is going to reach heights previously unfathomable with Disney’s aid.

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