I’m sure many people have subscriptions for either Hulu and Fancast. Both are popular and have their positives and negatives. Both do a great job of allowing users to watch content whenever they want with fewer commercials. While Hulu does have links to CBS shows, they don’t have an indepth description or episode list of them. Fancast does, however, along with providing HBO and Cinemax series episodes. So which is better?
First off, which ever one you choose, you won’t be able to watch content without commercial breaks. Hulu does have 24 hour commercial free days but those are rare. On average however, Hulu’s are a bit shorter and are about 20 seconds in average length while Fancast can run up to 45 seconds.
Hulu’s player is far better than Fancast. Fancast does not have any preference allowing you to choose between 360 and 480 resolution. The video on Fancast is not smooth and thus could take away from the viewing experience. Hulu is the outright winner in this category because of both its aesthetic and multi-choice capability.
In overall content, six months ago it would’ve been Hulu. But Fancast has gained a lot of momentum, mostly due to its partnership with Comcast and other providers as well as bringing pay-per-view channel shows like Spartacus and Big Love. The only catch with those is that you would need a higher level Comcast account which allows you to access both the latest episodes and fairly new movies. Fancast has also gotten into movies, bringing newer ones to viewers instead of the older ones that are on Hulu.
From a functionality standpoint, Hulu is still more appealing. Maybe it’s just me but there is something about the green hulu logo that gets me. The interface is easy to use and is constantly being tweaked and updated as a result from subscriber feedback. Fancast is younger so they might be a little behind. But the more people that turn to Fancast from Hulu will help them make a better site.
Of course neither has every show imaginable online—that would be simply outrageous and would ultimately lead to the end of television sets as we know it. While Slingbox does get around another major issue, both Hulu and Fancast do not work anywhere outside of the United States. There are a couple of applications you can download that are workarounds—they reroute your IP address to somewhere in the US. But as quickly as these pop up and gain momentum, both sites are quick to quell the hack. There was a same day hack posted on Lifehacker to download Hotspot (one of the workarounds) and within a couple hours, Hulu had diffused the situation by blocking it.
In the end, it’s probably good to have both accounts going. Of course, it does help if you are a Comcast subscriber so that you can get some episodes that might not be available to the normal person. But what would really be killer is if someone could create something that would sync up your favorite shows on both sites. That way, when creating your accounts, you wouldn’t have to go in and enter all thirty of your favorite shows into each website. As for the time being, although Fancast is great, I’ll still stick with Hulu as my preferred site.
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