We all knew it was coming, and now it’s finally here. Hulu Plus is now available to enjoy on Xbox 360. Microsoft joins Sony in becoming the second video games console to support access to Hulu’s collection of TV shows and movies. Now check this: Courtesy of Jack Link’s Beef Jerky (ya’ll remember the Sasquatch?), all Xbox LIVE members (that includes paying Gold subscribers and free Silver members) will be able to access the entire Hulu Plus collection on their consoles for one week, specifically from April 29 through May 6. Setup is simple. Download the Hulu Plus application on your Xbox 360 and you’ll be instructed to enter a code at hulu.com/plus/unlock. After giving Hulu your name and email address (no credit card required!), you’re all set. Free access to Hulu’s mega-collection of popular TV shows and movies from the Criterion Collection right at your fingertips. No, really; Kinect support is live at launch. Check out some stills of Hulu on Xbox in action below and begin your free trial before it’s too late. Once May 6 passes, you’ll have to be an Xbox Live Gold member ($50/year) and a Hulu Plus subscriber ($7.99/month) to continue accessing the content.
READ MORE Hulu Plus makes its way to Xbox 360 (free access this week!)
Microsoft has announced a new Kinect-specific update for Xbox 360 owners. Here’s out the makers explain it: “With Avatar Kinect, you can control your avatar’s facial expression, head, and arm movements. As you talk, frown, smile, or scowl, your voice and facial expressions are enacted by your avatar, bringing your avatar to life!” In other words, the update will give you a more detailed level of control over your avatar. Right now the Kinect captures basic movements, such as arm flails, moving side-to-side, jumping, and ducking. With Avatar Kinect, the sensor will be able to recognize a new slate of physical actions. Microsoft is highlighting a virtual hangout where you can meet up with up to seven friends and converse with them using your avatars. You’ll be able to select from 15 virtual environments. Think of it as Wii’s Mii Plaza, except this space will allow for broader interaction (detailed avatar movements performed by you, voice support). Avatar Kinect will hit Xbox 360s later this spring. Look after the break to see it in action.
In related Kinect news… At CES 2011 Microsoft announced that they sold 8 million Kinect sensors worldwide during its first 60 days on the market; they sold 3 million more devices than they had predicted they would during that launch window. More news… In a spring update, Hulu Plus will be joining Netflix, expanding users’ options when it comes to TV and movie content. In addition, the two services will be Kinect-compatible.
[Via Xbox] READ MORE Avatar Kinect gives you more control over your Xbox doppelganger
Hulu Plus has already been exhaustively detailed, so let’s get right to the good stuff. For the last four months Hulu has been testing the waters with the $9.99/month subscription based service in a preview period. Today the streaming service finally officially launched Hulu Plus to the masses. And at the same time they lowered the monthly fee to $7.99. Score! They say, “Any users who subscribed during the preview period will also receive a credit for the difference from the $9.99 preview price to be applied automatically to their next billing cycle.” So that’s been sorted out nicely. In tandem with the launch and price drop, Hulu Plus will now be accessible on Roku boxes. Check out the official PR after the break to see a list of all other Hulu Plus supported devices. All new subscribers to Hulu Plus receive a 1-week free trial–get started here.
[Via Hulu; Engadget] READ MORE Hulu Plus officially launches, drops price to $7.99/month and adds Roku support
Hulu is ready to take its premium subscription service to the next level by opening it up to more people. As of today you no longer need an invitation to subscribe to Hulu Plus; if you’re interested, go ahead and register for the service right now. Is your living room packed with Sony products? If so this next bit of news should crack a smile. Hulu Plus is now available to access on 2010 BRAVIA HDTVs and BRAVIA Internet Video Link via the BRAVIA Internet Video platform. It will “soon” be available on Blu-ray players, Blu-ray Home Theater Systems, Network Media Player, and Sony’s DASH. PS3 owners, listen here: Hulu Plus will open for all of you sometime next week. (Update (11/10): It’s available today.) Since July only those PS3 users who subscribed to PlayStation Plus (a $50/year service) could use Hulu Plus, but now Hulu is removing that road block and allowing all PS3 users with a (free) PSN account to sign up for their service. PS3 will remain the exclusive video games console with Hulu Plus access through the remainder of the year; it’s expected to land on Xbox 360 and Wii sometime in 2011. PR messages from Sony and Hulu sit after the break.
[Via PlayStationBlog; HuluBlog; Engadget] READ MORE Hulu Plus preview opens up to everyone, now available on 2010 Sony BRAVIA TVs, coming next week to all PS3 users
On July 14 Hulu Plus, the $9.99/month service that grants you access to boatloads of Hulu content on and beyond the PC, launched on the PlayStation 3. Currently only “a select group” of PlayStation Plus subscribers can gain access to Hulu Plus since it’s still in a preview phase. Remember, PlayStation Plus subscribers pay an additional $50/year for the recently launch Sony service that provides gamers with exclusive game demos, trials, and other content. If you’re a member of the PS Plus community you can download the free Hulu Plus application in the PlayStation Store and request an invitation to the preview. If you’re selected, good for you! If you’re not selected, and if you’re not a paying PS Plus subscriber, there’s no need to worry. “As Hulu Plus becomes generally available in the coming months”, all PS3 owners will have access to Hulu Plus. PlayStation 3 will be the only console-bound home for Hulu Plus through 2010. It is expected to land on Xbox 360 and Wii sometime next year. Full PR after the break.
[Via PlayStationBlog; Engadget] READ MORE Hulu Plus launches on PS3, exclusive to it until 2011
The rumor mill just couldn’t handle it anymore so Hulu decided to make things official: Hulu is expanding its video streaming services to an electronic device near you. The new subscription-based service does not replace Hulu.com, mind you; it gives TV addicts the option to pay $10/month to access full libraries of TV shows on their computers and many other devices. So you know how many of your favorite TV shows you watch on Hulu.com are limited to streaming only five episodes at a time? Hulu Plus subscribers will gain access to every episode of every season “for almost all of the current broadcast shows” Hulu offers. In addition to having access to modern hit shows like House and Modern Family, Hulu Plus subscribers will be able to watch “back seasons or full runs” of some classic TV shows. These include The X-Files, Arrested Development, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Hulu calls it “a treasure chest in the cloud for TV lovers.” I concur. And here’s the kicker: all native HD content will stream in 720p high definition.
If you’re a Hulu Price subscriber you can take all your Hulu content into your living room and on the go. I’ll list out the devices. Samsung Internet-connected and Samsung App-enabled TVs & Blu-ray players (available today); Sony & VIZIO Internet-connected TVs & Blu-ray players (support coming Fall 2010); Microsoft Xbox 360 (coming early 2011); Sony PlayStation 3 (coming soon). Got an Apple device? There’s a Hulu Plus app available in the App Store; it runs on iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPod touch 3G (all running iOS4), and iPad. And it will stream content over 3G and WiFi. Score! You can download the app today for free and watch some free content to test it out for yourself. It’s pretty incredible, the ability to watch all your favorite (network) TV shows in HD away from the computer. Sure you have to cough up $10 a month but if you’re a TV junkie like me, a price like that might just have you consider cutting the cable cord and opting for Hulu all the way. Unless, of course, True Blood and Mad Men mean too much to you. Decisions, decisions..
Currently Hulu is handing out invitations for Hulu Plus. If you want to be considered for the first wave of subscribers, click here. Hulu says, “We’ll be sending out as many invitations as we can each week, and as soon as we’re ready, we’ll remove the need for an invitation and start bringing in new subscribers without delay.” Look after the break for an informative video about Hulu Plus.
[Via HuluBlog] READ MORE Hulu Plus brings TV & movie content to Apple devices, Xbox 360, PS3, TVs & Blu-ray players