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Hulu Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue

Best overall value

Starting price $44.99

(4.34 /5)

Best for sports fans

Starting price: $49.99

(4.29 /5)

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue pros and cons

Hulu + Live TV

👍 Original series
👍 Best customer satisfaction
👎 Glitch issues

PlayStation Vue

👍 Sports add-ons
👍 Unlimited DVR storage
👎 Higher price

The bottom line

There isn’t any single “wow” factor that made Hulu + Live TV our favorite. But a combination of original shows and movies, local channel access, and higher customer satisfaction made Hulu + Live TV our first choice.

That said, PlayStation is great for HBO® binge-watchers and sports fans. The cloud DVR is also great for folks who binge-watch their favorite weekday shows every weekend.

Deals and promotions

As for these live TV packages, we unfortunately don’t have sweet deals for you just yet. But you can always take the free trials to see what you like. Fair warning—PlayStation Vue’s free trial is two days shorter than Hulu Live’s free trial. So, remember to cancel your trial on time so that monthly subscription charge doesn’t sneak up on you.

How are Hulu + Live TV and PlayStation Vue different?

Hulu Live is like a buffet—you can get a lot for one basic price, including the entire on-demand library from regular Hulu. But if you really want premium channels or more DVR storage, you’ll have to pay extra for them as add-ons.

PlayStation Vue is more like an ice cream bar where all the toppings are free, but you’ll pay more for every scoop, or in this case, every channel. You’ll get unlimited DVR storage and five simultaneous streams for free, though, with any of the packages.

Whether you pick the buffet or the ice cream bar, you’ll be paying for it every month. So, let’s look at the pricing plans.

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue prices and plans

Price
Live channels available
Max. DVR hours
Compatible devices
Max. multiple streams
Free trial
PlayStation Vue Hulu Live
$49.99–$84.99/mo.* $44.99–$50.99/mo.*
101* 60*
Unlimited (28 days) 200
13 16
5♱ Unlimited
5 days** 7 days

Data effective 08/16/19. Not all offers available in all areas.

*Not including add-ons. Additional Channels may be available for additional fees.
** PlayStation Vue free trial not available when you sign up for an Ultra package.
+Some restrictions may apply

Hulu + Live TV pricing and plans

Channel count Price
60+ $44.99/mo.
60+ $50.99/mo.

Data effective 08/16/2019. Pricing and speeds are subject to change. Not all offers available in all areas.

Hulu Live has an overall better cost per channel than PlayStation Vue. And they’re plans are so simple: one with ads and one without ads (well, kinda—you’ll still get ads on some shows and movies that aren’t a part of the Hulu streaming library).

And if that isn’t enough, you can purchase add-ons for premium channels, simultaneous streams, and more DVR space. Just beware that, with enough add-ons, a Hulu Live plan can get as expensive as a cable or satellite TV plan.

PlayStation Vue prices and plans

Packages
Access
Core
Elite
Ultra
Channel count Price
52+ $49.99/mo.
79+ $54.99/mo.
99+ $64.99/mo.
99+ (Also HBO and SHOWTIME) $89.99/mo.

PlayStation Vue’s higher price translates into a better value only in the top-tier plans and only if you are counting the free premium channels.

Make a personalized master list of your favorite channels first, and then you can track down how low or high you must go in order to get the TV experience that you want.

We’re betting on Hulu’s prices beating PlayStation Vue’s prices, but don’t let that stop you from getting the plan that suits you best.

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue fees, extra charges, and add-ons

By signing up for either Hulu Live or PlayStation Vue, you’ll have saved yourself from installation fees, cable boxes, cords, or long-term contracts. Take that, cable overlords!

Hulu + Live TV add-ons

Swipe Left to See All →
Add-onsAmount
Enhanced Cloud DVR (optional)200 hrs.
$14.99/mo.
Simultaneous Streaming
(optional)
Unlimited Screens
$9.99/mo.
Español Add-on (optional)$4.99/mo.

Hulu Live’s add-ons are nice, but rather expensive.

If you were to get the commercial-free package with all the add-on features and channels (without any bundling or discounts) it would come to about $124 per month. That’s pricier than the priciest cable packages.

That said, Hulu Live is a fantastic deal when you stick to the basics. If you are satisfied with less DVR storage and two simultaneous streams, Hulu Live gives great value for the basic price.

PlayStation Vue add-ons

Swipe Left to See All →
Add-onsAmount
Enhanced Cloud DVR (included)Unlimited (28-day time limit)
All plans
Simultaneous Streaming (included)Max 5
Sports pack (optional)$10/mo.
Español Pack (optional)$3.99-$4.99/mo.

PlayStation Vue gives you unlimited DVR storage and five simultaneous streams for free with any of their packages.

But here’s the catch, the base packages don’t have as good a price per channel as the Hulu Live packages. PlayStation Vue’s price per channel only gets really good when you get to the highest-priced packages.

If you love the free features on PlayStation Vue and aren’t overly attached to the channels found only in the higher-priced packages, PlayStation Vue’s base-level packages might make you happy.

But we know you can’t really make that informed of a decision about channels and prices until we help you understand the channel lineup.

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue channels

Missing Channels

Swipe Left to See All →
Hulu + Live TVPlayStation Vue
AMC (partial)
Hallmark Channel
Hallmark Movies & Mysteries
PBS
TLC
TV Land
VH1
Weather Channel
A&E
Comedy Central
CW
HISTORY
MTV
Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite
PBS
STARZ®
TV Land
VH1
The Weather Channel

Can you believe that Hulu would have the heart to skip out on the Hallmark Channel? Okay, so we all have different priorities when it comes to our favorite channels, but it’s nice to know what is missing from each service’s channel lineup.

PlayStation Vue might have more channels overall, but it also has more mainstream channels missing from its lineup. If you love A&E or the Viacom channels, PlayStation Vue will disappoint you..

Unfortunately, you’re out of luck with both of these live streaming services if the Weather Channel (yikes) or PBS is your favorite channel.

Sports channels

Sports channel
ESPN
ESPN2
ESPN3
ESPN Classic
ESPN News
ESPN Deportes
ESPNU
FS1
FS2
NFL Network
NBA TV
MLB Network
NHL Network
Hulu + Live TV PlayStation Vue

If you want all the major networks like ESPN and Fox Sports with your base plan, go with Hulu + Live TV. You’ll get all the major games at no extra cost. It’s great value for casual sports fans.

PlayStation Vue’s $10-per-month sports pack is built for hard-core sports fans. It includes NFL RedZone, extensions from MLB, ESPN, NBC, and CSN, and more. The only hard-core sports fans who won’t be satisfied are the hockey fans, since PlayStation Vue is inexplicably missing NHL access, sports pack or no.

You should get the PlayStation Vue Sports Pack if more coverage is worth the money to you. If not, Hulu Live will give you better value for the main channels.

If you happen to be indifferent to the big leagues and are more interested in your local games, your make-it-or-break-it is more likely to be local channel availability.

Local channels

Both services boast over 600 local channels. Unfortunately, neither service has published a full list of their sports affiliates. You won’t really know if either has the ABC or NBC affiliates you want until you check during your free trial.

Hulu Live and PlayStation Vue are neck and neck for best local channel access. But Hulu Live just barely beat out PlayStation Vue, according to our customer satisfaction survey.

Even so, you’re probably more worried about your local channels than the services’ overall local channel score. We can’t argue against PlayStation Vue if it gets you the local channels you want and Hulu Live doesn’t.

Want more local channels?

Hulu Live and PlayStation Vue keep on adding more local channels to their lineup, but have your local channels been added to either of them yet? If not, you can fix that with an antenna that will bring you local live broadcast—streaming service or no streaming service.

Premium channels

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue premium channels

HBO
SHOWTIME
STARZ
CINEMAX
EPIX
FOX Soccer Plus
Hi-YAH!
PlayStation Vue Hulu + Live TV
$15.00/mo. $14.99/mo.
$10.99/mo. $8.99/mo.
N/A $8.99/mo.
$15.00/mo. $9.99/mo.
$3.99/mo. N/A
$14.99/mo. N/A
$2.99/mo. N/A

If you just want to access HBO so you can watch Westworld, get Hulu Live. It generally offers better prices for premium channels. The amount you save can really add up over a few months.

Don’t throw PlayStation Vue out of the running just yet, though. It offers premium channels that Hulu Live doesn’t, and some of them even come free in the higher-priced packages. EPIX and Hi-YAH!, for example, both come free with the Elite package and above. HBO, SHOWTIME, and CINEMAX come free with the Ultra package.

Even if you have one of PlayStation Vue’s lower-priced packages, you may be able to bundle some of those premium channels for a discounted price.

On top of that, all of the premium channels, except HBO, can be bought at a discounted price if your are a PS Plus subscriber. One of these deals should save you enough to buy that Game of Thrones mug.

Bottom line, if you want to save money by getting one or two premium channels, we suggest Hulu Live. But if you are a premium channel binger with money to spare, PlayStation Vue will get you almost every premium channel out there (sorry, STARZ).

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue original shows and movies

Hulu Originals

Original series

  • A Handmaid’s tale
  • Castle Rock
  • The Act
  • Catch 22

Original movies

  • They Come Knocking
  • Ask Dr. Ruth
  • All That We Destroy
  • Treehouse

Hulu’s pride and joy is the award-winning A Handmaid’s Tale, but there are quite a few other original series and movies on Hulu too. And don’t worry—they’re all available on demand, so you can watch them whenever you want.

There have been rumors about PlayStation Vue starting into original content, but nothing concrete has come out yet.

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue specs and features

And now for the battle of specs and features—one of the greatest arguments for cutting the cord is that streaming services are more convenient, but which service offers the best features for your household?

Cloud DVR

Hulu + Live TV cloud DVR

Hulu + Live TV
All plans
Enhanced Cloud DVR
Storage Price
50 hrs. $44.99/mo.
200 hrs. Plan + $14.99/mo

For reference, 50 hours is about enough time to watch all eight Harry Potter movies twice. 200 hours is just enough time to binge-watch the entirety of CSI: NY, which wouldn’t be healthy, but just might get you into the Guinness Book of World Records.

Still, $15 per month is pretty steep, even for CSI:NY.

PlayStation Vue cloud DVR

PlayStation Vue
Access
Core
Elite
Ultra
Storage Price
Unlimited* Included
Unlimited* Included
Unlimited* Included
Unlimited* Included

*Whatever you save on your PlayStation Vue DVR will remain saved for 28 days.

Hulu Live’s 50 to 200 hours is a lot, but neither one comes close to PlayStation Vue’s unlimited DVR storage. Whatever you store won’t stay saved for more than 28 days, though.

Basically, if you want to save up tons of shows and movies for the weekend, get PlayStation Vue. But if you plan on getting around to watching your DVR content in a couple months, and you can live with less DVR storage, Hulu Live is your best option.

Multiple streams

Hulu + Live TV multiple streams

Hulu + Live TV
Any package
Enhanced Cloud DVR
$9.99/mo.
Max. streams Offline viewing
2 N/A
Unlimited streams at home
3 mobile streams
N/A

Again, Hulu Live proves to be best for those who like to keep it cheap and simple. Two streams will be enough for smaller families or even bigger families who know they won’t have a hard time sharing two streams.

Once you pay for the add-on, Hulu Live offers three on-the-go simultaneous streams and unlimited streams at home. As long as you have enough data and internet, all of your family reunion house guests will be able to access Hulu for as long as they stay.

Rumor has it that offline viewing on Hulu Live is in the works, but it’s not ready yet. All this means is that, on the go or at home, anyone who wants to watch any Hulu is going to need internet access.

PlayStation Vue multiple streaming

Playstation Vue
All packages
Max. streams Offline viewing
5 N/A

If five is the perfect number of streams for your household, rejoice, because PlayStation Vue will give them to you for free. Three of those streams can be used simultaneously outside the home—just like Hulu does, but PlayStation Vue does it for free.

We’ve already talked about how PlayStation Vue is good for households who want as much content as possible. Remember PlayStation Vue’s unlimited DVR? How much content could five simultaneous streams get through in 28 days?

Everyone using those streams would need to share the internet bandwidth, though, because PlayStation Vue doesn’t do offline viewing either.

Compatible devices

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue compatible devices

Compatible devices
Amazon Fire TV
Amazon Fire tablet
Android mobile devices
Android TV
Apple TV
Chromecast
iOS mobile devices
iPod Touch
LG TV Smart TVs (select models)
Mac computers
Nintendo Switch
PlayStation 3
PlayStation 4
Roku devices
Samsung Smart TVs (select models)
VIZIO SmartCast TV (select models)
Wii
Wii U
Windows computers
Windows 10 phones
Xbox 360
Xbox One
Hulu + Live TV PlayStation Vue

In short, PlayStation Vue is better than Hulu Live with iPod Touch, Android TV, and—wouldn’t you know it—PlayStation consoles.

Hulu Live works with Xboxes, Nintendo Switches, Windows 10 phones, Samsung TVs, VIZIO TVs, and LG TVs where PlayStation Vue can’t. So overall, you’ll have more device choices with Hulu Live.

There’s also a mobile app for each live TV service, which means you can watch Supernatural anywhere the internet can reach you.

Best streaming devices
Like these streaming services, different streaming devices have different strengths. If you’re setting up your streaming device too, take a look at our guide to streaming devices.

Video quality

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue video quality

Video resolution
Hulu + Live TV PlayStation Vue
1080p 720p

Hulu wins again with a significant lead on PlayStation Vue’s video quality.

720p is about your average TV video quality. So go with the 1080p if you want a better-than-average picture.

Hulu can’t give you its best 1080p on everything you stream—it’ll slip back down to 720p for some channels—but it’s still more than PlayStation Vue can do.

Having issues with your stream?

Your stream often relies on the internet connection in your home. For Hulu Live, an internet speed of 20 Mbps or more is ideal. 30 Mbps or more is best for PlayStation Vue.

Worried about your internet keeping up with your streaming service? Check out this guide to the best internet plans for streaming where we cover fiber, DSL, and more.

Channel guide

The best way to enjoy live TV is to know what’s live.

Both of these streaming services have made a channel guide so you can know what’s live: the Broncos game, the news, or Frankenstein’s monster (sorry, neither of them have the Benedict Cumberbatch version).

But not all channel guides are created equal.

Hulu Live channel guide on a desktop computer.

Hulu Live’s recently revamped (thank goodness, it was horrible before) channel guide gives you a good sense of what is going on.

You can choose any one of the genre tabs at the top to see what’s playing now, and you can click right to see what will be on after the kids have been put to bed. Actually, you can see what’s going to be on for the next two weeks.

But compare that to PlayStation Vue’s channel guide:

PlayStation Vue channel guide on a desktop computer.

The PlayStation Vue channel guide does practically the same thing but in reverse, with vertical scrolling for times and right clicking for more channels.

Scrolling down to see what would be on later felt natural to us, and we noticed we could see more channels at once with the PlayStation Vue guide.

There’s an option to see the channel offerings from a few days ago or a few days ahead, so you can remember that new show you discovered last Wednesday and know what time Steven Universe will be on this weekend.

Also, by using that handy red line you can see above, PlayStation Vue makes it clear just how far a program has run. With this, you’ll know how much you’ve missed and if it’s worth jumping in now.

Hulu usually takes the lead when it comes to usability, but PlayStation Vue wins the channel guide round.

Commercials

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue commercial-free packages

Hulu + Live TV

  • Can’t fast-forward commercials on live content
  • Can’t always fast-forward through commercials on DVR or on-demand material

Hulu + Live TV

  • Can fast-forward on-demand programs
  • Can’t fast-forward commercials on live content or DVR

Hulu is pretty good for skipping commercials during on-demand shows—if you pay for the commercial-free version. How badly do you want to skip the vegetables and go straight for the dessert?

PlayStation Vue does okay for commercial skipping, but not fantastic. You can skip commercials when watching material stored on your unlimited DVR, but not for on-demand material. Somehow it still feels like interrupting your dessert with regular and mandatory bites of canned spinach.

Our final take

Overall, Hulu has a pretty good idea about what their customers want: original shows and movies, enough DVR storage, and slightly better customer satisfaction. Hulu’s channel guide and lack of offline streaming keep it from being perfect, but the pros outweigh the cons.

PlayStation Vue’s strengths cater to folks who are more interested in big league sports, most premium channels, and lots of DVR storage.

The five free simultaneous streams and channel guide make PlayStation Vue tempting, especially if you are willing to go all out on the highest-priced packages and use every feature to its fullest.

Hulu + Live TV vs. PlayStation Vue FAQ

Do Hulu + Live TV or PlayStation Vue have yearly contracts?
Nope. You’ll pay only your monthly subscription fee for either Hulu Live or PlayStation Vue, no contracts—period. And that means you can cancel anytime without facing the wrath of early termination fees like you would with a cable provider.
Do I need a satellite dish or set-top box for PlayStation Vue or Hulu Live?
No. You need a streaming device. You can throw out the satellite dish along with your traditional TV subscription. Or keep it around and turn it into an artsy bird bath.

What about other streaming services like Sling TV?
We’re glad you asked. There are quite a few other streaming services. Sling TV, for example, is a streaming service that offers three plans: Sling Blue, Sling Orange, and Sling Blue + Sling Orange.

Sling is the king of international channels and has a really great price per channel, but it doesn’t offer as many channels as Hulu Live or PlayStation Vue.

There’s more than just Sling though. CableTV.com has put together a comparison of all the top streaming services: Hulu Live, PlayStation Vue, Sling, YouTube TV, fuboTV, and Philo.

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