Print 21 comment(s) - last by Tedtalker1.. on Mar 14 at 5:22 PM

Full-length episodes of "The Simpsons" can be viewed on Hulu  (Source: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation)
NBC-Universal and Fox's joint venture video site launches today

Online video streaming site officially opened its virtual doors today. A joint venture between NBC-Universal and Fox, Hulu has $100 million in venture capital funding under its belt and partnerships with over 40 content providers.

Hulu features a slick, clean interface that is direct and to-the-point. The website isn’t cluttered with many advertisements and its (so far) easy to find movies or TV shows. Load times for videos are also speedy and quality is impressive.  

As can be expected, content is the key factor that will determine Hulu’s success, and the site has plenty of it. According to Hulu, the company has created partnerships with numerous big names including Sony, Warner Brothers, NBC Universal, Fox and MGM.

Hulu allows users to stream full-length TV shows such as The Simpsons or The Office, along with full-length movies such as X2: X-Men United or The 40-Year-Old Virgin. In total, Hulu says it offers over 100 feature-length films for free. Although the movie catalog might not be as large as a Blockbuster’s, it’s free and a decent start.  

To add to its appeal, Hulu also gives the option to search for content that isn’t directly hosted on the service. For example, Hulu currently doesn’t have a partnership to stream CW’s hit TV show Smallville. However, searching for the show via the site’s search function yields links to the CWTV Smallville website, which features full-length Smallville episodes.

At the moment Hulu doesn't permit users to download videos to their hard drives.

Advertisements on Hulu aren’t very intrusive. In-video ads feature a short pre-rolled advertisement and a limited amount of interrupting commercials. In DailyTech’s testing of the service, most advertisements didn’t exceed the length of 15 seconds, and also didn't occur very often. In addition, small pop-up flash advertisements are also occasionally displayed in shorter video clips.  

Prior to its launch, Hulu spent 18 months in private beta testing. The service cost over $15 million to develop.

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Looks great
By f1sh3r on 3/12/2008 9:12:03 PM , Rating: 2
This is a great alternative to other video streaming sites. Instead of having all sorts of junk ads floating around, and clicking through 4 links to watch a full movie, you just have to watch a few integrated ads. i hope theres a mobile version.

my two favorite movies are there: big lebowski and me, myself and irene.

RE: Looks great
By The Sword 88 on 3/12/2008 9:40:52 PM , Rating: 2
I like it.

RE: Looks great
By eye smite on 3/12/2008 9:41:44 PM , Rating: 3
How cool, they have enter the ninja. Older movies are better anyway. HA

RE: Looks great
By Orlando on 3/12/2008 10:16:29 PM , Rating: 2
They have 'Welcome Back, Kotter'. It is one of my favorites.

I love the clean interface and the good quality video.

RE: Looks great
By OddTSi on 3/12/2008 11:05:45 PM , Rating: 2
Needs more Mythbusters and The Universe.

RE: Looks great
By feelingshorter on 3/13/2008 2:04:35 AM , Rating: 2
I just finnished watching "Kagemusha" and Titan AE.

Titan AE went flawlessly but i think there is something seriously wrong with Kagemusha. The movie ends abruptly at 2:22:56, which is the length the movie files is reporting but the site is reporting it as 2:39:12 in length. So the movie is basically missing a piece of the end!

Anyways, Fox is really on to something. The ads, really are unobtrusive. They don't cover up the picture at all if you play it in full screen (for a long full length movie, who wouldn't?). Even then, it was just 1 ad that popped up like 3 times for a few seconds at the bottom of the screen in a 2 + hour long movie. Its even LESS advertisement than watching TV!

Keep it up and Hulu will definitely be a force to not take down Youtube (since thats more user submitted), but offer an alternative for full length legally streamed videos.

RE: Looks great
By Lazarus Dark on 3/13/2008 1:12:03 PM , Rating: 2
I used this all day yesterday, they have a lot of my favorite shows, though not every episode of some(yet). I'm loving it, the quality is great, I watched some older stuff and it looked like a cheap dvd transfer, but the newer stuff looks as good as any dvd with no noticeable problems. The adds are totally acceptable, and hey, after seeing an add for Chili's pop up ten times or so over the course of a couple movies, I went out and got some Chili's! In fact, this kind of low-key advertising gets my attention more than regular tv commercials, which I usually skip when using the dvr or just ignore while I surf the net during commercials. Moving forwards, studio's/networks need to realize dvr and net has changed the game. The old way just doesn't work.

But Hulu seems to be the first service that really gets it right! Throw in every episode of Babylon 5 and X-files and I may never leave the site! (I just can't afford to buy five to ten seasons of a show on dvd at 30 to 50 bucks a season)

By DASQ on 3/12/2008 8:40:18 PM , Rating: 2
Only available to Americans, it seems!

RE: Bah!
By Nimbo on 3/12/2008 8:44:46 PM , Rating: 2
Yep, no hulu for the rest of us.

RE: Bah!
By hadifa on 3/12/2008 9:04:46 PM , Rating: 4
Yep, no hulu for the rest of us.

In Persian, Hulu means "Peach".

Its usage pattern is kind of similar to peach in English I think. Like using it as an adjective for girls.

What a Hulu!
What a Hulu car.

I wonder if that's why they have chosen this name for the service!

Anyway, read the quote again.

RE: Bah!
By BruceLeet on 3/13/2008 12:56:28 AM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately this video is not currently available in your country or region.

When bandwidth and budget gets low they'll put up Ads from google and let the rest of the world access the videos, yay capitalism?

RE: Bah!
By SunAngel on 3/13/08, Rating: 0
RE: Bah!
By mmntech on 3/13/2008 9:34:29 AM , Rating: 2
And it might be a while. I know in Canada, they actually have to seek permission from Canadian networks to put shows, even if they're rebroadcasts from the US. It's why iTunes Canada took so long to get the TV service up. No wonder we're lagging behind.

RE: Bah!
By darkpaw on 3/13/2008 11:18:02 AM , Rating: 2
I think this is the big issue with legal media going global. For the most part, media companies sign agreements with local companies in other countries, which gives them the rights to distribute the shows locally. Since those agreements didn't take into account Internet rights, services like this will be restricted until those agreements change.

That is my general understanding at least.

By kelmon on 3/13/2008 7:21:04 AM , Rating: 2
Is this service going to be usable only on a computer or is there plans to enable you to watch the content on your TV? Free is great but I really don't want to watch movies on a computer monitor.

By darkpaw on 3/13/2008 11:15:28 AM , Rating: 2
Is there something preventing you from using the TV as a display? It works fine with other streaming services like netflix.

By Lazarus Dark on 3/13/2008 1:02:59 PM , Rating: 2
If for some reason, your video card does not have tv-out, you can easily purchase various devices/adapters/media streamers to hook the comp to your tv, cost depends on what you get, a vga-to-component adapter is the cheapest way, or several usb or pci devices can be had at less than 50 bucks with composite/svideo out.

By SlingXShot on 3/13/2008 11:13:24 AM , Rating: 2
Very nice... since stage6 was taken down. This is a good way to watch many tv shows and movies.

Not bad
By v1001 on 3/13/2008 11:13:36 AM , Rating: 2
Nice they have tons of Family Guy

I do have one concern
By VoodooChicken on 3/14/2008 11:01:21 AM , Rating: 2
I checked out a couple of the movies, and they were completely uncensored with only a "This movie is Rated R" notice. I have a hard enough time blocking my cousins from stuff they don't need to be seeing that's tagged on the net. Other sites have had a bit more effort in the age verification department, so I'm disappointed on the corporate side of this.

They Need More Movies
By Tedtalker1 on 3/14/2008 5:22:45 PM , Rating: 2
I really love the quality and performance of the site but they are truly lacking in quantity of decent movies.

I already watched some decent movies I had not seen but now the choices left are crappy B films.
Here's to hoping they update the site promptly.

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