In a Future of Streaming Television, How Do Hulu and Sling Compare?
There’s no question that cable TV is dying as millions of viewers make the jump to streaming. These days, you can watch your favorite shows on almost any device, meaning you never have to miss out because you’re on the move. Netflix may have been the first service to make waves, but today there are dozens of options to choose from. The question is: which service should you pick to “cut-the-cord” and replace your current setup? Today, we’re going to take a look at both Hulu and Sling to help you find the best modern TV streaming solution based on your needs.
First, it’s important to recognize that Hulu offers both a video-on-demand (VOD) service, like Netflix, as well as their Live TV package. Sling, on the other hand, is solely a live TV service. Both Hulu and Sling provide access to dozens of your favorite channels, like ESPN and NMCSN for sports, ABC, Fox, CNN and MSNBC for news, and MTV, FX, The History Channel, and National Geographic for entertainment. Ultimately, both companies are able to serve as comprehensive replacements for your current cable setup.
You can stream these channels live anytime, anywhere, on almost any device as long as you have a stable internet connection. However, it’s worth pointing out that both services structure their packages differently – Hulu’s Live TV is one price for 60+ channels, but you’ll need to pay separate subscriptions for premium channels like HBO. Sling’s model is focused on customization, which means you have more flexibility over what channels you have and what you pay and are less likely to waste money on channels you don’t need. If you’re a TV fanatic though, you can’t forget Hulu’s VOD service that comes as standard, which includes dozens of cult classics such as The Simpsons, ER, Twin Peaks, and Seinfeld. You should also be aware that Disney recently acquired Hulu and launched a separate Disney + streaming service, so future pricing and content may change in the near future.
Original programming is where Sling just can’t compete with Hulu, as the former doesn’t have any – or at least not yet. Hulu is home to the multi-award-winning The Handmaid’s Tale, and acclaimed original content like Catch-22, The Act, Harlots, and Remy. Hulu focus on quality over quantity, but it’s guaranteed they’ll still release plenty of fantastic shows in the near future.
Flexibility & Price
In terms of flexibility, Sling definitely offers more options. With Hulu, you can pay $5.99 a month (after a free trial month) for their VOD service, or $44.99 a month (with a week free trial) for their VOD and Live TV service. The Live TV package comes with over 60 of the most popular TV channels, but for the likes of HBO you’ll need to pay an extra $14.99 a month. Sling offers 3 packages: Orange, Blue, and Orange & Blue. The Orange package and Blue package come with the same core channels, but the former is more news and sport focused, whereas the latter has more entertainment channels – both packages are $25 per month, but the first month is only $15 at the moment. The Orange & Blue package is $40 per month, but only $25 for the first month. If you don’t have an internet-connected TV, you can prepay for 2 months of the service and you’ll receive your Sling device for free.
So, who should you choose? If you’re a massive TV-lover who needs to stay up to date with the best new shows while binging old favorites, Hulu is for you. In terms of value for money it really is unbeatable when you factor in the VOD service and all that groundbreaking original content. However, if you’re on a budget and prefer a more stripped-back package, Sling is the best service around to make sure you’re only paying for what you need. We suggest browsing both of their websites to work out which channels and shows you can’t do without before making your final decision.