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Hulu finally cuts all the ads if you pay up

The streaming TV service has long stuck subscribers with the same commercial breaks as traditional television. Now for $12 a month -- that's $4 more than a regular subscription -- the ads finally vamoose.

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Hulu has traditionally kept ads even for paying subscribers.

Joan E. Solsman/CNET

Hulu will finally stream your shows without any ads -- for a price.

The streaming-TV service introduced a more expensive subscription Wednesday that removes all commercials as you watch its catalog of original shows, big network series and movies.

Hulu is a joint venture of some of TV's biggest networks, companies that rely on advertising for the bulk of their revenue in their traditional television businesses. For a long time, that meant Hulu's owners were interested in keeping consumers addicted to their shows -- even if they watched online -- while also making sure they stayed accustomed to commercials. As a result, Hulu's paid subscriptions still included commercials. However, as ad-free subscription services like Netflix (which starts at $8 a month) have risen in popularity, the concept of paying for online video and still having to sit through ads has become more jarring.

The company said a new commercial-free tier for $12 month will join its standard subscription that has limited ads for $8 a month. As before, people who pay also get access to certain shows earlier and gain the ability to watch all of Hulu's video on mobile devices and connected TVs. Free viewers have a heavier load of ads and must watch on desktop or laptop computers to see the greatest number of shows and movies.

Free users tend to see about three to four ads per break, whereas $8-a-month members see about one to two. The amount also varies show to show.

However, seven broadcast TV shows will still have a 15-second ad before the episode begins and another 30-second spot at the end, according to a Variety report. Those shows are ABC's "Scandal," "How to Get Away with Murder," "Grey's Anatomy," "Once Upon a Time" and "Agents of Shield;" Fox's "New Girl;" and NBC's "Grimm."

UPDATED at 9:53 am PT: With the typical number of ads free and paid viewers see.