Netflix Vs. Hulu: Putting Two Streaming Giants Head to Head

By Leila Rocha

It’s common knowledge that many Americans use streaming services. Whether it’s to watch TV shows,youtube videos, movies, or listen to music, we all know people who are subscribed to at least one streaming service. 

Some of the most notable in the US for streaming TV shows and movies are Netflix and Hulu. Both are immensely successful, which is why the best thing to do would be to subscribe to both. But what if you could only choose one? Which one would be right for you? Let’s explore your options.

I’ll start this off with a brief description of both of the services’ history. Hulu was founded by Jason Kilar and Beth Comstock in 2007, and is parent-owned by The Walt Disney Company. Netflix was founded in 1997 in California by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph, but it did not start streaming until 2007. So although Netflix started sooner, they have both been streaming for the same amount of years. Hulu has over forty-million subscribers in 2022, and Netflix has over two hundred-twenty million in 2022. This automatically places Netflix at the top as far as subscriber counts go. But, that does not always mean that it is better. 

Although they are both unique platforms, they share many similarities. For example, they both boast popular originals. With Hulu you can access ongoing star studded series such as The Kardashians starring…well…the Kardashians… and Only Murders in the Buildings with Selena Gomez and Cara Delevingne. Meanwhile, with Netflix you can watch popular series such as Stranger Things with Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, and friends.

But despite both services having numerous shows and movies to watch, Netflix has more than seventeen-thousand titles while Hulu only has over four-thousand. In addition to this, Netflix has a kids profile free with subscription. More importantly, Hulu is only available in the US. Netflix is available in nearly two-hundred countries. But, keep in mind that Hulu is also cheaper.

 Despite their success, both services consistently remove what may be some of your favorite shows or movies. Just this month Netflix removed seasons thirty-five through thirty-seven of Wheel of Fortune, movies Grown Ups, Kung Fu Panda, and Soul Surfer. Meanwhile, Hulu is removing some as well. After this month you can no longer stream The Breakfast Club, A Raisin in the Sun, Despicable Me, Despicable Me 2, and The Polar Express (again, this is only a few).

If you are still wondering if you want to be Team Netflix or Team Hulu then you may want to consider the prices. As I mentioned earlier, Hulu is cheaper, you pay $6.99 per month and $12.99 per month with no ads. For Netflix you can choose a plan and pay anywhere from $9.99-$19.99 per month with no ads. 

As far as customer ratings go on the App Store, Netflix received a 3.8 out of 5 star review with three-hundred twenty-four thousand ratings. One reviewer gave a five star rating while still expressing her concerns, “Can you bring some new shows & movies?” 

On the other hand, Hulu has a 4.6 out of 5 star review with 1.4 million ratings. Reviewers noted how annoying ads can be (if that is the plan you chose). “I love this app so much there are a lot of cool shows and movies. But there are some ads that annoy me,” says a reviewer from the app store.  But, they still left a five star review. 

Regardless of which side you choose, Hulu and Netflix are both successful streaming services with perks and flaws. Perhaps if Hulu expanded their audience they could someday have as many subscribers as Netflix has. 

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