Geek Girl Report: The Great Internet TV Debate – Netflix vs. Hulu
I’m always on the lookout for ways to save a couple of bucks on my monthly expenses. Like cable, for example. Paying $100 a month just to watch a handful of shows that I was only sort of interested in seemed kinda pointless to me. So, I decided to get rid of my cable and switch to an Internet TV service, which at the most will run you about $10 a month. And after taking a look at some of the many Internet TV services that are available, my choice came down to two popular services: Netflix and Hulu.
I’ve heard plenty of good things about Netflix from my friends who had it. And after checking it out myself, I can see why there’s nothing but praise for Netflix. One of the big draws for me was their selection. Netflix offers a massive selection of movies and TV shows, including full seasons of popular favorites like “Star Trek,” “Family Guy,” and “24.” And for just $8 a month, that’s a heck of a deal. Another plus for me is that there are no commercials, whatsoever. And the fact that you can get Netflix on a number of devices, from gaming systems to iPhones and tablets, means I can take my favorite shows with me virtually everywhere I go. Netflix will even drum up some recommendations for you based on your answers to a quick survey, though admittedly not all of their recommendations are winners.
However, one gripe I do have with Netflix is that their selection isn’t exactly “current.” It takes quite a while for recent TV series and movies to make their way to Netflix. For example, “The Avengers” movie, which released a couple of months ago, still has not shown up on Netflix. So if you’re looking for the most current releases, you should probably looks elsewhere.
Hulu was the second option I checked out, and it was definitely a contender. Hulu’s super user-friendly site and streamlined layout make it a breeze to look for the shows you want to watch. And another thing I appreciated about Hulu was that you did not have to download a special video player to use it on your computer, unlike Netflix.
Hulu’s big draw, however, is its selection of TV shows and movies. It’s pretty impressive, and for the most part is more current than Netflix’s selection, since a good portion of Hulu’s content comes from shows that are currently airing. However, the availability of some shows depends on how the networks want to promote it. Some shows may have plenty of episodes to choose from, while others may only have a handful of episodes and a couple of less-than-5-minute “bonus content” clips. This can be pretty annoying if the show you’re wanting to watch falls into the latter category.
So in the end, I decided to go with Netflix. Their selection of full seasons, lack of commercials, and availability on multiple platforms made it the clear winner. Granted, it may not be right for everyone, but it seems to suit my needs just fine. But to sum it up, here’s my final opinion on both services: If you like movies and older TV shows, go with Netflix; if you like current TV shows, go with Hulu.