Hulu Plus: More Devices, More of a Threat to Netflix?

hulu plus TV

The Hulu Plus tornado is truly starting to descend upon the connected TV market, inhaling more and more devices. Today, Sony announced that the Sony Dash personal Internet viewer would have access to the $9.99 a month subscription service.

The Wi-Fi-enabled Dash, which retails for $199, is a tablet-style device with a 7-inch full-color touch screen, and is the newest Sony product to gain access to the service. Many Sony connected TVs and Blu-ray players also have access.

This comes on the heels of Wednesday’s announcement that the Boxee Box would also carry the service at some point in the future, in addition to apps to enable access to Netflix and Vevo.

Boxee’s efforts to feed Hulu into its service and Hulu’s attempts to block its access provided great drama early last year for connected TV fans, but the battle has ended in a compromise: According to Peter Kafka at All Things D, Boxee will remove free Hulu access from its service in exchange for Plus.

So let’s refresh: Here’s the current list of devices that have, or will soon have access to Hulu Plus:


  • Apple iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch
  • Samsung connected TVs and Blu-rays
  • Sony connected TVs and Blu-rays
  • Sony PlayStation3
  • Sony Dash

Coming Soon:

  • Xbox 360
  • Vizio connected TVs and Blu-rays
  • Roku
  • TiVo Premiere

Pretty much the only major devices not on that list are Apple TV and Google TV. I guess we can call it a bandwagon now, huh?

And with the addition of every new device, Hulu Plus becomes more and more of a competitor with Netflix — which, as Janko joked last month, is “something every washing machine can now access.”

Netflix said earlier this year that it considered Hulu Plus a threat — and Hulu, with 30 million monthly users and projected 2010 revenue of more than $240 million, is now a threat to take seriously.

However, both companies have fundamental differences in their operations and both offer substantially different content to their users. In fact, while their catalogs have some overlap, they’re almost complementary at this stage: Keep up with current TV on Hulu, use Netflix for back-catalog TV and recent film releases. The two companies might be professional rivals now, but they might soon become a cord-cutter‘s salt and pepper.

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