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Hulu's Pluses and minuses on the iPad and iPhone (photos)

Can Hulu Plus provide enough for its $9.99 a month to convince a cable-cutting editor to keep the service? We run it through its paces on the iPad and iPhone.

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Scott Stein
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1 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

The iPad interface for Hulu Plus is a lot like the Web version of Hulu, but it runs a lot more smoothly than the Netflix iPad app.
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2 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Scrolling through the list of networks feels a little random--big-name providers are placed side by side with tiny, unknown entities.
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3 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Adding individual episodes to your personal queue is an easy task, and necessary for building a playlist to avoid browsing.
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4 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Video playback looked as good as HD on the iPad.
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5 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

The selection of "movies" on Hulu Plus--if we can deem them that--is pathetic indeed. Most people wouldn't even accept this content for free.
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6 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

On the playlist queue, episodes are broken up by show for easier navigation.
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7 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Here's one advantage to having a 4:3 screen like the iPad's: classic TV shows in 4:3 have no letterboxing and actually look great. Seen here: "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour."
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8 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Once we had a good experience with one classic show, we naturally wanted to try them all ("Bob Newhart").
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9 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Many shows on Hulu Plus have a complete multiseason collection of episodes to browse, but not all of them.
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Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Hulu Plus on the iPhone is pared-down in terms of interface, but surprisingly well-featured and laid out nicely.
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11 of 11 Scott Stein/CNET

Hulu Plus (and its minuses)

Video playback on the iPhone 3GS looked pretty good to us--no need for Retina Display.

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