Hulu unveiled an ad-free option to subscribers on Wednesday, priced at $11.99 per month.
The $7.99 monthly rate with commercials is still an available plan. Current Hulu subscribers will have to option to upgrade to the commercial-free service at any time for the additional $4 per month.
“At Hulu, we pride ourselves on listening to our customers and giving them the best possible experience,” said Mike Hopkins, CEO, Hulu. “Many of our customers have asked us for a commercial free option, and so today we are excited to introduce just that. Providing more choice for consumers is fundamental to the Hulu experience, in addition to an array of choices in content and devices, our customers can now choose to watch with or without commercials.”
Recently, Hulu announced a multi-year agreement with EPIX that will bring films from Lionsgate, MGM and Paramount to the online platform for the first time. Hulu also signed licensing deals with AMC, FX and Turner, and acquired the exclusive subscription streaming rights to full libraries of hit broadcast and cable shows including “Seinfeld,” “Empire,” “Fargo,” “South Park,” “CSI,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Nashville,” “Deadliest Catch,”and “The Last Ship,” among others. Earlier this year, Hulu began to offer Showtime as an add-on directly to subscribers for an additional $8.99 per month.
Hulu has also made a big investment in original programming. It’s greenlit event series “11/22/63” from Stephen King and J.J. Abrams starring James Franco; debuted and renewed comedy series “Difficult People” produced by Amy Poehler with stars Julie Klausner and Billy Eichner; announced “Casual,” a comedy series from director Jason Reitman; “The Way” (wt), a drama series starring Aaron Paul and Michelle Monaghan from Jason Katims; the first long-form project from Freddie Wong and the RocketJump team; and Season 4 of “The Mindy Project,” starring Mindy Kaling.
In 2015, the company announced it had grown to nearly 9 million US subscribers, an overall 50 percent growth year over year.