In July, YouTube TV, the multichannel virtual video program distributor (vMVPD), increased its prices. Now Hulu’s live TV offering is following suit.
Starting December 18, Hulu + Live TV, which combines the ad-supported tier of Hulu’s subscription streaming offering with access to live TV channels, is increasing the base price to $ 65 per month – $ 10 more than the previous monthly price of $ 55 USD. It is the second price increase in exactly one year. On December 18, 2019, Hulu + Live TV increased its prices from $ 45 per month to $ 55 per month.
The increase will take place for both current and new subscribers, so viewers cannot be scrutinized to keep costs down. Hulu + Live TV subscribers who pay to watch on-demand shows with no ads are also increased from $ 61 per month to $ 71 per month.
The increase brings the price of Hulu to other comparable MVPD virtual services. Still, Hulu + Live TV includes the SVOD product, which is typically $ 6 with ads and $ 12 without ads.
YouTube TV is also $ 65 per month, almost twice as expensive as it was when it debuted in 2017. AT&T AT&T TV Now virtual MVPD service is now $ 60 per month for the lowest Step. Sports-oriented Fubo TV is also $ 60 for the lowest level.
Other virtual MVPD services like Philo and Sling TV cut costs by offering fewer sports channels and limited channel offerings.
The price hike on Hulu + Live TV is just the latest in a series of hikes affecting the MVPD virtual ecosystem. Service providers are currently grappling with expensive sports car rights and are still trying to address existing or potential cable cutters.
This fall, services like Hulu and YouTube tried to capitalize on the return of live sports by running promotions and marketing on their live channel offerings. Over the past few years, MVPD virtual services have appealed to their customers by emphasizing that they only have to pay for live channels when they need to, rather than being tied to long-term contracts that may come with a traditional TV package are connected.
Last month, Hulu + Live TV had 4.1 million customers. That’s a small fraction of the 32.5 million subscribers who pay for the SVOD product. Even so, Hulu + Live TV is growing, having 41% more subscribers this year than a year ago.
It’s not just virtual MVPD services that are increasing their prices. In October, Netflix increased its pricing in the US, increased its standard plan from $ 13 per month to $ 14 per month, and increased its premium tier from $ 16 per month to $ 18 per month.