So I was lucky enough to get onto the beta version on Hulu earlier this month (good to see my ridiculous amount of blog reading did something positive for me besides eating away my soul), and so far, so good.
For those who aren’t familiar with Hulu, it is a new video on demand website that was created by NBC and News Corp. As of right now, it is not offering any video sharing capabilities; however, the addition is expected sometime in the future. What the site does have, however, is content. A whole lot of content. You’ll find episodes from almost every major show on a FOX or NBC network (i.e., NBC, FOX, FX, Sci Fi, Bravo, USA, and more), plus plenty of content from other networks like ABC, MTV, CW, etc. The best feature the site offers in comparison to YouTube is that videos are not broken into 7-9 minutes sections, but rather you watch an entire episode from start to finish. The only interruption is a 15-second commercial every 10 minutes or so, which is more than bearable. For videos from NBC or FOX, the screen is much larger than that on YouTube (of course, you can maximize the screen size just like you can on YouTube, but I found this causes the picture to “blink” every few seconds). When you are viewing content from other networks, it links you to that network’s page, so the screen size and other functions will vary.
Overall, I give Hulu the thumbs up. However, I am 100% certain this site will not cause YouTube many problems as the two sites serve pretty separate services — at least at this point. We’ll have to see if the pendulum begins swinging when Hulu begins offering video-sharing capabilities. It would take awhile regardless, if for no other reason than the sheer number of videos already existing on YouTube.
I would definitely advise trying to sign up for the beta version so you can check out the site for yourself. Just don’t expect it to happen too fast — I waited for about a month to get my invite.