Hulu has been planning to release its virtual reality app since late last year. Initially expected to launch in November 2015, the app would make it possible for users to watch content as if they were inside the shows themselves, or as if they were sitting in a movie theater.
Hulu has finally released the app, made for the Oculus-powered Samsung Gear VR headset and available through the Gear VR Oculus Store.
"Experience your favorite shows and movies on Hulu like never before," the company states in its dedicated webpage for Hulu VR.
According to Hulu, with a subscription to the streaming service, users can watch content in 360-degree virtual reality environments, which include the aforementioned movie theater, a modern living room and a beach.
2D content was not meant to be viewed in virtual reality, so the app instead turn the viewing environment into a fully immersive one. Users can choose to tweak the environment that they choose, with changes possible to be made to aspects such as lighting and the outside scene.
In addition, Hulu VR will give users access to exclusive virtual reality content coming from providers such as RocketJump, National Geographic and Showtime Sports.
Upon the launch of Hulu VR, more than 25 pieces of virtual reality content are available, with the films accessible to all users of the app even if they are not subscribers to the streaming service.
One of the more notable pieces of virtual reality content available through Hulu VR is an exclusive short titled "The Big One," the first virtual reality film originally produced by Hulu. The film, which was developed with Lionsgate, taps YouTube creator Freddie Wong and RocketJump to showcase a meteor shower descending into Earth that quickly transforms from a spectacle into a disastrous event.
Hulu head of experience Ben Smith added that the company is still in the middle of exploring the possible monetization models for its virtual reality content, with Hulu said to be excited about the advertising opportunities presented by the platform. However, due to consumers only just starting to acquire virtual reality headsets, it might be a while before Hulu VR is tasked to generate revenue for the company.