Elizabeth Entenman
August 08, 2016 1:48 pm

Once upon a time, we used to be able to open Hulu and watch almost any TV show we could dream of. It was all readily available, and all for free. But unfortunately, those days are numbered: Hulu is about to discontinue its free platform, and require a subscription to stream content.

NBC / giphy.com

This is happening very fast. According to The Hollywood Reporter, over the next few days the free service is going to disappear completely, and you’ll be (politely) asked to pay either $7.99 a month for streaming with ads,  or $11.99 a month for streaming without ads.

Hulu has been around for almost nine years, and a lot has changed since it first burst onto the scene. They’ve made their free content harder to access, restricting what’s available and when. They’ve seriously upped their original series game. And they’ve introduced unlimited streaming subscriptions for very little.

Let’s face it: With competitors like Netflix and HBO Now, free streaming simply isn’t an option anymore.

Fox / giphy.com

Still, if you don’t mind waiting a few days to watch an episode, there will be another option. Hulu inked a distribution deal with Yahoo! that will let viewers stream the last five episodes of major network shows, eight days after they air. It’s not instant gratification, but it’s still free, which is gratifying in its own way.

Watch what you can on Hulu now because soon, in order to catch your favorite shows after right they air, you’ll need to start paying for a subscription. Not sure if you’re ready to make the plunge with yet another streaming service? Not to worry — Hulu is offering a free trial before you buy.