It is interesting that for a time Hulu was the only place that we could watch our TV shows online. We had originally started paying for Hulu because we could get previous TV shows and paid a cheaper price with a student discount. But we recently dropped Hulu.
I remember talking about how I wish with cable companies you could pick and choose what channels you were going to watch, but that was not an option. Now even though the cable company is still trapped in the typical bundling model we are actually getting more choices with show applications for our devices. This allows us as consumers to choose what we want to consume and from whom. Now some are still making users be tied to a cable subscription, but it feels like it is only time until even they offer a pay-to-watch model or just give other options.
It is amazing, now that we have dropped Hulu we have actually found that most of the channels that we watch have their own apps. You have to be willing to watch commercials (and these channels are getting to make all of that ad revenue), but that is not much different than what was happening for us on Hulu. It is slightly annoying to have to go between so many apps to find all the shows we watch, but at the same time we get to choose exactly what we want to watch. Currently we have ABC, NBC, FOX, CW, Lifetime, HBO, and Netflix. This gives us access to a wide array of shows and movies. It is great to not have to be tied to cable to get shows.
Besides having choice in what shows to watch we get more of an option for when and where we watch. You are not tied to the TV that is connected to the cable box. All you need is a device with the app and an Internet connection and you can watch your shows. Now part of what is great is all the devices that connect to the TV that have the apps available on them, but it is still great to be able to disconnect from the traditional TV option and be able to have access other places.
Now if you care about watching the show night-of then the apps are probably not for you, but honestly who cares if you are a day or even a week off from everyone else? It is not like you don’t have access to watch the episodes at all, and you just have to be careful about spoilers. At the same time the trade off makes it totally worth it, but it is hard to remember which channel handles things differently. The most annoying thing though are the ones who will show the premiere of a new series day after, but then every other episode you have to wait a week on. I feel like that is just a bad idea because in that two week period it would be so easy to lose people to a different show.
It will be amazing to see what will happen as time goes on and more of TV channels choose to create their own online viewing apps.