Price: $7.99 per month
Days to pay for itself (compared to cost of cable): 1.6 per month
It's been well over a month since we cut cable, and we're surprisingly happy with our new set-up... With one exception: Hulu Plus. First off, here's what it is: Hulu Plus is a streaming service available through the PS3, Roku, mobile Apple devices, and a few select TVs/Blu-ray players. Hulu Plus has over 400 shows and 800 movies available for streaming to your TV/game console/mobile device.
They have some good shows (Nova, X-Files, Firefly, Law & Order SVU, Spaced, Little Britain, Daily Show, etc.). They have a plethora of crap shows (Airwolf, Time Tunnel, Major Dad, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, etc.). They have a bunch of shows I never watch, but that people seem to like (Family Guy, Glee, Jersey Shore,30 Rock, etc.).
It sounds like a pretty good deal for 8 bucks a month until you realize that the standard version of Hulu has four times the number of shows FOR FREE. I can watch Simpsons, Venture Brothers, Fringe, Walking Dead, Sons of Anarchy, etc for free on Hulu, but NOT on Hulu Plus. I realize that it's a licensing issue, but I really don't want to shell out $8 per month just to watch Nova with commercials (sometimes thrown in mid-sentence).
The selection isn't even the worst bit. I don't know if Hulu Plus won an online auction for a load of Soviet-era Bulgarian technology, but that seems to be what their running their service on. Damn near every show you watch will skip ahead, freeze, or (if you're lucky) completely lock-up so that you have to manually re-boot the PS3. It's ridiculous. I have never had that problem with Netflix's streaming service, but It happens constantly with Hulu Plus.
The one thing I can say that I really like about Hulu Plus is that they've started to make available a load of Criterion Collection films, and seem to be adding in more all of the time. That's good. When I was trying to watch Nobuhiko Obayashi's 'House' The film kept locking-up and it took me over 2 hours to watch an 88 minute film. That's not good.
Don't believe the hype - There's no "race" between Netflix and Hulu Plus, that'd be like a race between a Ferrari and a filing cabinet. Hulu Plus could be a great service if they work out the bugs in their system and focus on securing more licenses for current shows. That looks like it is a long way off, so until they work out their myriad flaws, I can't (in good conscience) recommend Hulu Plus to anyone. Then again, it's still better than Comcast.