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Consumer Chronicle: Video Streaming Sites Put Your Favorite Shows at Your Fingertips

netflix huluLEXINGTON, Ky. (8/26/13) – With the hectic lifestyles of Americans, sometimes we do not have the luxury of being able to kick back, relax and watch our favorite television shows as they premiere. Basic cable, beware.

Two video streaming sites make it a little easier to watch our favorite television shows and movies whenever it's convenient. With a click of a button, you're watching television shows just as if they were live. Netflix and Hulu Plus have taken the nation by storm with their vast variety of programming, and reasonable monthly prices.

Netflix and Hulu Plus both cost $7.99 a month. But the difference is the types of programming available. Netflix provides some of today's most popular series, such as Breaking Bad, Madmen, The Walking Dead, and Glee. But, you won't find episodes from seasons that are currently airing or recently ended. However, if you're in the mood to binge-watch reruns of CSI: NY for hours, Netflix would be great for you. You'll have the luxury of not waiting for the next episode from week to week.

Netflix also carries a vast array of classic movies and more recent films. Newer films, like House at the End of the Street, The Dictator, and ParaNorman can be found, as well as older movies like Where the Red Fern Grows, Planet of the Apes, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Or, if you're looking for shows to entertain the children, Netflix offers the Just for Kids feature. Netflix Just for Kids has shows like Spongebob Squarepants, Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius and Power Rangers. Or, for the Disney lovers, movies like Mulan, Hercules, and Pocahontas can be streamed instantly.

Hulu Plus also has a wide variety of shows to stream. But, where Netflix doesn’t stream recently aired episodes, Hulu Plus does. Hulu Plus will stream many shows within a week of their airing on television. So, if you missed an episode, you'll likely be able to catch up via Hulu Plus. Hulu Plus has popular shows like Saturday Night Live, Teen Wolf, Bones, Burn Notice, and The Voice. Whereas, you may not be able to catch up on AMC favorites such as The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad like you could with Netflix, Hulu Plus will allow you to watch some of the newest episodes of popular shows on ABC, USA, and many more. Hulu Plus also carries movies, but does not have the A-list selection Netflix offers.
 
Sorry CBS lovers. For those affected by the Time Warner blackout of the popular channel, you won't be able to catch up on Under the Dome and Big Brother 15. Some CBS shows are available on Hulu Plus, like The Amazing Race, but they do not provide newer episodes of recently released series.

Both streaming sites carry their own original series that aren't available on regular television. Some of Netflix's most popular original series are Orange is the New Black, House of Cards and Hemlock Grove. Hulu Plus' original series consist of shows like The Awesomes, Quickdraw, and A Day in the Life.

Still confused about which site is best for you? For new users, Netflix offers a one-month free trial, and Hulu Plus offers a week-long free trial. Both sites can be streamed on a number of consoles, like the Wii, Playstation 3, and Xbox 360. Or if you don't have a gaming system, you can use a Roku. Roku's are specifically made for streaming television and start at around $49.99.

For full lists of what shows and movies are available, visit www.netflix.com or www.hulu.com.

David Gillum
SurfKY News

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