Last week, Hulu announced that it would soon be live-streaming some of Time Warner’s finest cable TV selections, following that conglomerate’s acquisition of a 10 percent stake in the streaming platform. Considering this news came not long after word broke of Disney’s bundle agreement with Hulu, we joked about Hulu’s sudden resemblance to the media companies it had purportedly been developed in opposition (or alternative) to, because we might as well laugh on our way back to traditional cable. Well, today Hulu took one step closer to being Netflix, announcing that it’s moving to an all-subscription model. So say goodbye to the ads you tried to skip or otherwise tolerate in between viewings of The Path and The Mindy Project, and prepare to greet another subscription fee.
According to Variety, Hulu will no longer provide a free, ad-based model for any of its syndicated or original offerings. Ben Smith, Hulu’s senior vice president and head of experience, said in a statement that the shift has been in the works for the last couple of years. But don’t worry, because it’s all been for you and Yahoo View, which is a “new ad-supported TV-streaming site” from the internet company:
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.
There’s currently no word on just when the free, commercial-rich tap will be turned off, but Yahoo View is already up and running.