On-demand streaming services have grown in recent years, with millions of people leaving cable or satellite to save money. Peacock TV and Hulu are two leading platforms with thousands of TV shows and movies for you to watch.
The two streaming apps have similar plans and offerings, but you may not know which is best for you. We tested Peacock and Hulu on numerous factors, including content, user experience, and features, to determine which one is better.
What’s the Difference Between Peacock and Hulu?
The major difference between Hulu and Peacock TV is their content. You will primarily find ABC and FOX content on Hulu and NBCUniversal content on Peacock.
Both serve as an affordable alternative to Netflix, but only one platform offers access to live content.
Here is how the two video streaming services compare.
|App||Parent Company||Mo. Cost||Live TV? (Y/N)||Sports|
|Peacock||NBCUniversal||$4.99+||Y||Sunday Night Football & MLB|
There are a few similarities, but the platforms vary greatly in what they offer.
Peacock vs. Hulu: Pricing
The monthly price is an important part of choosing a cable replacement. Both apps have multiple plans and pricing, allowing users to decide which is best for their needs.
Here are the plans and pricing for Peacock.
|Subscription Type||Ads? (Y/N)||Monthly Cost||Annual Cost|
|Peacock Premium Plus||N||$9.99||$99.99|
Here are the plans and pricing for the Hulu streaming service.
|Hulu Basic (with ads)||$7.99||$79.99|
|Hulu Premium (no ads)||$14.99||N/A|
The one similarity both platforms share is that the base plans are ad-supported. Peacock used to offer a free tier, but that is no longer available to new subscribers.
*Now through June 12, 2023, get an annual subscription to Peacock Premium for $20. This is a savings of 60 percent off the normal price. Use the code SUMMEROFPEACOCK to get the deal.
Price winner: Peacock
A free trial is a great way to see if a streaming app will work for you. Unfortunately, Hulu and Peacock don’t currently offer free trials.
This differs from the other major network-based streaming service Paramount+, which offers a seven-day free trial.
Read our Peacock vs. Paramount+ analysis to see how the two compare.
Free trial winner: Tie
What Can You Watch on Peacock and Hulu?
Content libraries are important for streamers to consider when choosing a platform.
Peacock and Hulu are like-minded in their respective content approach. You can watch full seasons of popular shows, original content, and movies.
Peacock even offers some live sports. You can get something similar with Hulu, but it requires one of two costly upgrades to get.
Peacock Content Library
Peacock is the home of the NBC family of networks. That includes several cable networks. Those are:
- Focus Features
- NBC News
Most shows that air on any of those networks are available to watch on the service the following day.
You also receive access to on-demand content from popular hit shows, including:
- The Office
- Parks and Recreation
- Friday Night Lights
- Law & Order franchise
Additionally, you’ll get access to original programming, including hits like Bel-Air, Poker Face, and Rutherford Falls.
The app claims to have 100,000 hours of movies, TV shows, and more. Read our Peacock review to learn more.
Hulu Content Library
Hulu is the home of the FOX and ABC family of networks. Additionally, it has content from 20th Century Studios, FX, Freeform, and Searchlight Pictures.
It doesn’t have the breadth of content that Peacock has since it only houses around 3,000 titles.
However, like Peacock, you receive access to next-day airings of popular ABC and FOX shows. These include:
- Abbott Elementary
- Big Sky
- Bob’s Burgers
- Good Trouble
- Hell’s Kitchen
- The Bachelor
Hulu also has some of the most watched original series in the space, including popular hits like The Handmaid’s Tale, Fleishman Is In Trouble, Only Murders in the Building, and Kindred.
Read our Hulu vs. Hulu Live review to learn more.
Content library winner: Peacock
Can You Watch Live TV on Peacock or Hulu?
On-demand streaming apps usually don’t air live programming, which is the case with Hulu. On the other hand, Peacock may offer you access to some live TV based on the plan you choose.
If you choose the Premium Plus plan, you can watch your local NBC station on the service.
However, if you don’t want to pay for the top tier, some users may get access to their local NBC affiliate. This is available in a few select cities. Those are:
- Chicago (WMAQ)
- Philadelphia (WCAU)
- Boston (WBTS)
- New England Cable Network (NECN)
- Miami (WTVJ)
- Los Angeles (KNBC)
- New York (WNBC)
If you don’t live in any of those markets, you won’t get access to live TV if you stick with the Premium plan.
An over-the-air antenna is typically the best way to watch local channels without cable. There are no affordable live TV packages that offer access to local networks since they are expensive to carry.
Live TV access winner: Peacock, since they offer it in their top tier
*Related: Do you want to cut the cord on cable but don’t know which streaming platform to choose? Take our free quiz to see which service is best for you.
Hulu with Live TV
Hulu differs from most other streaming platforms as it offers both an on-demand and live version.
Hulu with Live TV is a premium live TV streaming service that is a true cable replacement. It carries roughly 90 channels, including popular live sports, entertainment, and lifestyle networks.
Here are the available plans with Hulu Live.
|Hulu Live Basic *Includes Disney+ (with ads), Hulu (with ads) & ESPN+ (with ads)||$69.99|
|Hulu Live Premium *includes Disney+ (no ads), Hulu (no ads), ESPN+ (with ads)||$82.99|
|Hulu Live Legacy *Must have signed up before Dec. 8; includes Disney+ (no ads), Hulu (ads), ESPN+ (ads)||$74.99|
|Hulu Live only *Includes live TV only||$68.99|
As a Hulu Live subscriber, you also get access to Hulu and the Disney Bundle. This bundle includes Disney+ and ESPN+, as well as Hulu.
While it is an attractive live service, we did not consider it in our review as it’s not a true alternative to Peacock.
Read our Hulu Live TV review to learn more about the service.
Can You Watch Live Sports on Peacock or Hulu?
Many potential cord-cutters worry they won’t be able to watch live sports without cable. Thankfully, Peacock offers access to some live sporting events, including:
- Premier League
- Sunday Night Football
- College football games (specifically Notre Dame football)
Casual football fans will love the access to Sunday Night Football. Read our guide on how to watch NFL games without cable if you need more coverage.
Unfortunately, Hulu doesn’t currently carry live sports. You will need to purchase the Live upgrade or get a separate subscription to the Disney Bundle or ESPN+.
Read our ESPN+ review to learn more.
If you don’t want another service, sports fans are better served with Peacock.
Live sports winner: Peacock
Hulu vs. Peacock: Interface
A good user experience is necessary to keep subscribers for streaming platforms. The Peacock TV streaming service and Hulu both generally have a smooth look and feel.
Peacock has an easy-to-use interface that is simple to watch on a TV, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
When you sign in on a computer or device, you’ll see featured shows near the top of the screen and a row of options at the very top.
Channels, Browse, and Featured options are the three main ways the platform organizes its content.
Browse is the default view for larger screens. Channels is the view you see first if you watch on your phone.
Clicking on a title brings up a screen for the show. It populates with the show’s Rotten Tomatoes score and its Flixter rating.
A purple triangle that indicates the content requires a Premium account.
Peacock lets you create up to six user profiles. You can also create a PIN to block certain content if you have young children in your home.
The Hulu user interface is also easy to use. When you launch the platform, you will see a featured show along with content the platform believes you will like.
Along the top of the screen, you will see Home, TV, Movies, News, My Stuff, and Hubs. Selecting one will take you to a separate page with content recommendations based on your interests.
You can search for content using the magnifying glass at the top right. Similarly, you can click on the TV or Movies tab to find shows or movies to watch.
From there, you can narrow down available content by genre or select something from the For You or Popular sections.
Hulu allows you to create up to six profiles, making managing content in large households easier.
While it’s a bit more robust than the Peacock interface, Hulu doesn’t house content from the Disney Bundle. You must access the respective platforms to watch content.
This is a shame since you must go to Disney+ if you want to watch anything from Pixar, Star Wars, Marvel, National Geographic, or The Mandalorian. We’re not downgrading Hulu for this, but it would be nice to see all content in one app.
Read our Disney+ review to learn more.
Interface winner: Hulu since it has a more robust user experience
Like the interface, available features are an important consideration when comparing streaming services. Here is how Peacock and Hulu stack up regarding features.
What Devices Can You Watch Peacock and Hulu On?
Both Hulu and Peacock work with almost any streaming media player. Compatible devices include:
- Amazon Fire Sticks and Cubes
- Android and iOS devices
- Apple TV
- Gaming consoles
- LG Smart TVs
- Roku devices
- Samsung Smart TVs
- Vizio Smart TVs
Basically, if the streaming device has a screen, you can watch either service on it.
Compatible devices winner: Tie
Being able to watch content on multiple devices simultaneously is essential, especially for larger households.
Peacock allows for three concurrent streams, while Hulu only allows for two. Hulu Live does sell an unlimited screens add-on, but it is not available for the on-demand version.
Simultaneous streams winner: Peacock
Which Service Has Parental Controls?
If you have young children in your home, you may want to shield them from certain kinds of content. Both platforms offer six user profiles and parental controls.
This is good for larger families and those with growing children.
Parental controls winner: Tie
When you are watching your favorite shows, nothing is worse than them getting pixelated, lagging or having less than clear sound. Both streaming apps offer 4K streaming capabilities, but you must sign up for Peacock Premium Plus to get it.
Hulu offers 4K, but it’s basically only available for their original content. However, it is important to remember that older shows and movies may not be available in 4K.
Peacock and Hulu both currently only support up to Dolby 5.1 surround sound.
Playback winner: Tie
Recommended Internet Speeds
High-speed internet is a necessity when streaming. Thankfully, both services don’t require a lot of bandwidth to use.
Here are the internet speed requirements for Peacock.
|Video Quality||Min. Speed|
Here are the internet speed requirements for Hulu
|Video Quality||Min. Speed|
|HD (720p)||3 Mbps|
|HD (1080p)||6 Mbps|
Read our guide on the suggested internet speed for streaming for most alternatives to cable TV to learn more.
Recommended speed winner: Hulu
Commercials are a necessary evil if you want to watch content. Streaming services know this and try to balance the need to monetize content with not bothering subscribers.
You will see ads on both platforms. Peacock includes ads in all plans, with the exception of the Premium Plus plan. This plan only includes ads in live shows.
Like Peacock, Hulu has an ads and no-ads version. The no-ads version still includes commercials in a select few titles. Typically, these are the most popular ones on the app.
Both platforms claim to run less than five minutes of ads per hour of content. We found that to be generally true in our testing.
However, ads on Hulu are noticeably worse than on Peacock. They are more frequent and don’t always come at natural breaks.
Regardless, both platforms include progress wheels to let you know when the content will return.
Ads winner: Peacock
Do you like to watch movies or shows on the go? If so, you will need offline viewing capabilities and a compatible device to do that.
Peacock lets you download content, but you must have the Premium Plus plan. Additionally, it’s only available for select content.
Hulu requires you to have their no-ads plan for offline viewing. However, it’s available on most of their content, not just select shows.
Both services allow you to download up to 25 titles at once.
Offline viewing winner: Tie
Which is Better: Hulu or Peacock
Either of these streaming services can serve as an excellent cable and satellite TV alternative. Peacock and Hulu have lots of original content, next-day airings of popular TV shows, and movies.
Here is how the two streaming services compare in all of our categories.
The best one for you comes down to what you watch. Neither service has a free trial, but it’s possible to access your local NBC station via Peacock Premium Plus.
Additionally, Peacock includes live sports. For our money, it’s the better platform.
You may find that you like both and don’t need any other streaming subscriptions if you combine the two. This could provide significant savings versus choosing one of the available live TV streaming services.
An expensive cable package is not necessary to watch your favorite shows or live sports. You can even pair apps together to net substantial savings.
If you’re on the fence about Peacock or Hulu, try the respective lower-priced tiers for a month to determine which is best for you. Both have robust features and no contracts, so you can cancel whenever you want.
What’s your favorite streaming service?
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