Hulu on Wednesday announced that it will slash the price of its base, ad-supported subscription plan from the current $7.99 to $5.99 a month, effective February 26, 2018. Hulu, which is jointly owned by AT&T, Walt Disney Co., Comcast Corporation, and 21st Century Fox Inc., said that the cost of its non-ad-supported subscription plan will remain at $11.99 per month. The Hulu/Spotify combo subscription that Spotify handles billing will also remain unchanged at $12.99 per month.
The move comes barely days after rival streaming giant Netflix Inc. announced a price increase across all of its plans to help cover the costs of its content. Netflix hiked prices of its U.S. service by 13% to 18% to help pay for its massive slate of TV shows and films. The Los Gatos, California-based firm has been accumulating huge debts to fund its films and TV shows.
As of December 2018, Netflix’s long-term debt was approximately $10.4 billion, compared with $6.5 billion at the beginning of the year. However, its efforts seem to be paying as the streaming giant scored its first best picture nomination on Tuesday, something CEO Reed Hastings and his team have dearly sought. Netflix garnered 10 nominations for the 91st annual Academy Awards, which were announced by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills, California.
Earlier this month, Hulu said it ended calendar 2018 with more than 25 million subscribers, which is less than half the Netflix’s 58 million customer base in the United States. Nonetheless, Hulu’s figures represent a 48% rise in subscribers from calendar 2017.