Hulu to pull the plug on cable-cutting consumers?

Hulu to pull the plug on cable-cutting consumers?

Cutting the cable cord and streaming network television over the Internet may get a lot more difficult if recent rumors prove true. The NY Post reports Hulu and other similar streaming networks will soon begin requiring customers to provide authentication to prove they are pay-TV customers.

While nothing has been confirmed, and no official statement from Hulu has been issued, the Post reports that future Hulu users may have to log in with their cable or satellite providers account information in order to verify their status and get access to Hulu streaming content.

But it isn’t Hulu’s burden alone to potentially make streaming more difficult for users. News Corp, which owns Fox, is expected to begin preliminary talks with Comcast for a TV Everywhere deal that would also require a more stringent authentication process. It has been predicted that Comcast will make the switch to an authentication-based model prior to the summer Olympic Games.

With more and more people opting out of their monthly cable plans in favor of streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, cable companies are looking to protect their profits by restricting access to their content from streamers that, as it stands now, aren’t paying a monthly fee.

Ever since the site launched in August 2007, more and more users have rallied around the idea of streaming their content for free. Because of this, the entertainment industry has seen a shift in behavior among viewers, with a greater amount looking to stream their content from the web. According to Digital Entertainment Group, overall spending on home entertainment has increased by 2.5 percent in the first quarter of 2012.

Of course with the move to authentication, Hulu — which is a joint venture between NBCUniversal (Comcast/General Electric), Fox Entertainment Group (News Corp), Disney-ABC Television Group (The Walt Disney Company), and receives funding from Providence Equity Partners – could suffer a dip in numbers down the road.

It’s unclear whether Hulu’s rumored move to stricter authentication practices will affect Hulu Plus members, but so far that doesn’t seem to be the case. What’s more, it’s perplexing as to why Hulu would want to require authentication from customers looking to stream network television that doesn’t entail paying a month cable fee anyways.

As it stands now, it is thought that any sort of authentication process would take years to complete, so consumers may at least be able to take comfort in that. However, if all proves true, streamers currently enjoying the wealth of free access Hulu provides may find themselves forced to crawl back to their cable providers.


House votes to restore net neutrality rules, but effort faces long odds

The U.S. House of Representatives has approved the Save the Internet Act, a measure intended to restore net neutrality rules that were repealed in 2017 by the Federal Communications Commission.
Movies & TV

Disney Plus will have less than 20% of the content available on Netflix

Disney is bringing the full weight of its massive content library to its own streaming service in 2019. How will Disney Plus compare to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime? Here's what we know so far.
Home Theater

Don't need sports or local channels? Philo can save you some cash

Philo is an affordable live TV streaming service, with an impressive channel list and feature set. With more hardware support, unlimited DVR, and greatly improved TV Everywhere features, the service is now even easier to recommend.
Movies & TV

Netflix vs. Hulu: Which streaming service is right for you?

Netflix and Hulu are two of the biggest names in streaming entertainment. Our guide will help you decide which streaming service has the content you want and the best value for your limited budget.
Home Theater

Banish the buffer screen with these tips for silky smooth streaming video

If you’ve been having troubles with streaming Internet videos from Netflix and other services in HD, the problem may be your network. Here’s how to make sure your streaming video experience goes smoothly.
Social Media

How to protect yourself from GoFundMe scams before donating

Can you spot a GoFundMe scam? While the fundraising platform says scams make up less than a tenth of one percent of campaigns, some do try to take advantages of others' charity -- like a case last year that made national news.

The FCC and White House want to bring high-speed internet to rural areas

The FCC and the White House unveiled new initiatives to bring high-speed internet to rural areas, including $20.4 billion in incentives to companies to build infrastructure. The FCC also announced ways to speed up the rollout of 5G.

Search all of Craigslist at once with these great tools on web and mobile

Not finding what you need in your local area? Craigslist can be great for finding goods and services from further afield too. All you need do is learn these tips for how to search all of Craigslist at once.

Internet Explorer zero-day exploit makes files vulnerable to hacks on Windows PCs

Evidence of an Internet Explorer zero-day exploit capable of letting hackers steal files from Windows PCs was published online by a security researcher who also claims Microsoft knew of the vulnerability and opted not to patch it.

Buying airline tickets too early is no longer a costly mistake, study suggests

When you book can play a big role in the cost of airline tickets -- so when is the best time to book flights? Earlier than you'd think, a new study suggests. Data from CheapAir.com suggests the window of time to buy at the best prices is…

Report says 20% of all 2018 web traffic came from bad bots

Distil Networks published its annual Bad Bot Report this week and announced that 20% of all web traffic in 2018 came from bad bots. The report had other similarly surprising findings regarding the state of bots as well.

Google Chrome will get a Reader Mode for distraction-free desktop browsing

If Google's testing of Reader Mode on the Chrome Canary desktop browser is successful, soon all Chrome users will gain access to this feature. Reader Mode strips away irrelevant content on a webpage for distraction-free browsing.

Worried about your online privacy? We tested the best VPN services

Browsing the web can be less secure than most users would hope. If that concerns you, a virtual private network — aka a VPN — is a decent solution. Check out a few of the best VPN services on the market.

Want to make calls across the internet for less? Try these great VOIP services

Voice over IP services are getting more and more popular, but there are still a few that stand above the pack. In this guide, we'll give you a few options for the best VOIP services for home and business users.