I have recently dropped cable TV and only have Internet service now. This was due to budget reasons and I actually don't really watch TV that much. As it turns out, I am now part of a movement called Zero TV.
Now, my son loves watching Cable TV and wasn't too happy about this when he comes to visit me. Because of this, I decided to finally look at Netflix and Hulu Plus. In this post, I will review them both and my point of view of their service. I am only going to review their Internet Access and not the DVD service.
I started both with the trial version of their services. Netflix beat out Hulu Plus by a mile on this as they offer a 1 month trial. Hulu Plus only offers a 1 week trial. I think a month of service is very generous and really gives you a change to test drive them. To me, a 1 week trial is too short of a period of time given the fact most of us are working Monday through Friday. It only gives us a couple days to really use the service.
For an anime fan, Hulu Plus wins hands down. They have a huge array of programming for any anime otaku. Even for those that hate dubs, much of the programming is subbed. My son didn't like this however as he doesn't want to read AND watch.
Netflix on the other hand, does have anime, but not in the depth of Hulu Plus. They did have many of your favs you would see like Soul Eater, Full Metal Alchemist and High School of the Dead to name a few. Though you can see that most of these have been out for a while. Now if you were to pick up Netflix DVD service, then you get a larger pick of anime. This is at an additional cost however. My son wan't happy to see Naruto listed on Netflix, but was "UNAVAILABLE" as it was for DVD rentals only.
Even with that said, if you are a TV junkie, then Hulu Plus may be your better bet. I did like the fact Netflix had a much larger selection of international movies for me to watch. I love the Asian Action movies and several were here that I was interested in watching.
Ease of Use
I found that Netflix was an easier choice for adding favorites to your list. It is just a couple clicks of the remote to add or remove them. It was also much easier to move between episodes on Netflix as well. I didn't like the menu or how the setup was for Hulu Plus at all. It just seemed confusing to me and my son. He was actually able to master moving around in Netflix rather fast.
Hulu Plus does have a cleaner interface than Netflix, but netflix actually showed you DVD covers in the genres you picked. Yep, Netfix will ask you to pick 5 movies/shows at the beginning of your setup. Depending on them, it sets up a list of 75 movies that match simialrly to them. I like this function as it makes it easier to just browse around. It also adapts to add genre/items depending on your play list.
Side Note: Netflix on my TV gives you the option to go to Regular Netflix or Netflix 'Just for Kids' which I really like. He can go directly to any childrens programs from tv series to anime to movies. He really got excited when he could see the other epsiodes of Spider Riders and watch Kaijudo.
I don't want my son to see some of the crazy shit I watch - heehee.
Netflix, if you don't have it available for the internet service, then just DON'T LIST IT. Having it show up as "UNAVAILABLE" is just ridicolus. It is like dangling a carrot in front of someone to say 'yea, we got that" and then "NOT!". Not cool and we don't need to need your limitations for service.
Hulu Plus drops a fucking commerical advertisement into your program. It happens in the beginning, a couple times while watching it and if you jump ahead, you get another commercial. They are usually 30-45 second clips, but still annoying to me. If I am paying $7.99 a month for a service, WTF do I have to watch commercials? Netflix on the other hand doesn't have any commercials. That in itself won me over big time.
Okay, you probably saw this was going towards Netflix and I did. I really loved the anime selection on Hulu Plus, but those !@#$@#$%^&* commercials rubbed me wrong. If I want commercials, I will go to Cable TV. For $7.99 a month is isn't bad TV for the amount of times I actually turn it on.
Shoutout to Hulu Plus: If you drop the commercials, you will have a new customer - hint, hint!
Do you use an internet service to stream your movies or shows?