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Yes, you can watch Hulu Live TV away from home, but there are a few things you need to be aware of, including Hulu’s home network policy and how it relates to different devices and multiple homes.
Hulu Live TV does not prohibit subscribers from watching either on demand or live TV content when away from home. However, the rules are different depending on the device used to access the service. Regardless of the device, nearly all of the restrictions come down to Hulu’s home network definition. This guide explains exactly what Hulu Live TV’s away from home restrictions are, as well as its home network guidelines in general.
Understanding Hulu’s home network policy
Hulu classifies its live TV subscription service as a single-home service. Due to this, Hulu does not allow one Hulu Live TV subscription to be accessed in two different homes.
Hulu Live TV requires new subscribers to assign a live TV subscription to a home network within 30 days of signing up. Once set, the subscription is then permanently tied to that Wi-Fi network and defined as the “home” network.
The knock-on effects of this rule mainly applies to what is commonly referred to as “living room” devices. For example, any device that falls into this category won’t be able to access live TV or on demand content when away from the home network.
Devices you cannot watch Hulu live on when away from home:
- Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick
- Android TV
- Apple TV
- LG TVs
- PlayStation 4/5
- Roku TVs and Roku players
- Samsung TVs
- VIZIO SmartCast TVs
- Xbox 360
- Xbox One
The single-home policy does not affect mobile devices, as these are designed for use when on the go. Therefore, subscribers are able to access Hulu Live TV when away from home on just about any mobile device.
Devices you can watch Hulu live on when away from home:
- Android smartphones
- Android tablets
- Fire Tablets
However, there are some caveats that even mobile users will need to be aware of to ensure uninterrupted viewing. The main one is that mobile devices are required to ‘check in’ every 30 days with the designated home network.
In other words, anyone away from home for longer than 30 days will likely be unable to continue accessing Hulu Live TV on mobile devices.
Checking in is fairly simple to do as it just requires the subscriber to open the app on a mobile device when connected to the home network. At which point, the 30-day limit starts again.
Another, but to be expected restriction, is that mobile devices can only access live TV while connected within the United States. This is not an unusual limitation, with most live TV providers only allowing access while the user is located in the U.S.
Using Hulu with a VPN
Due to the need to be connected to a designated home network, subscribers also cannot access Hulu Live TV on a living room device when using a virtual private network (VPN).
Each time Hulu Live TV registers a living room device as connected to a Wi-Fi network (other than the designated home network), the Hulu app will display a warning explaining that the service cannot be accessed until the device reconnects to the previously assigned network.
Again, this VPN restriction does not affect mobile devices as they are generally permitted to connect to Hulu Live TV in locations that are outside the home area. However, subscribers may run into issues if they try to access the mobile app while having been continuously connected to a VPN for longer than 30 days.
Moving home with Hulu Live TV
If moving home, then you will need to access live TV from a different network. To overcome this, Hulu allows subscribers to change their designated home network to a new one. However, by changing the designated network, the previous one loses its compatibility with living room devices.
To avoid subscribers abusing this feature, Hulu Live TV only allows subscribers to change their designated home network four times within a 12-month period. This is not an absolute limit as the company does state that, when a subscriber runs out of available home network changes, they can reach out to Hulu for help with any further changes. Therefore, additional changes are at the mercy of Hulu and evaluated on an individual basis.
To change a Home network to a new one, subscribers simply need to open the Hulu app on a living room device after connecting to the new network. At which point, a prompt (shown in the image at the top of the article) will be visible. Simply selecting the “Yes, make this location my home” option when the warning is shown will complete the home area network change.
Alternatively, subscribers can also change their home network by heading to the “Manage Your Account” section in a web browser and choosing the “Set or Change Home” option under “Privacy and “Settings.” Again, changing the home network using this method will depend on the device, as Hulu does not allow home network changes to be performed while connected to a mobile network. This includes non-mobile devices using a mobile hotspot to connect to the internet.
Hulu Live TV away from home summary
Subscribers can access Hulu Live TV when away from home, although it depends on the device. While mobile devices are generally permitted to access content outside the home area, living room devices are not. However, mobile devices are still required to manually check-in with the home network every 30 days to retain access, and can only access live TV from within the U.S.
Below is a final reminder of the devices you can and cannot stream Hulu Live TV on when away from the home network:
|Can Access||Can’t Access|
|Android smartphones||Fire TV/Stick|
|Android tablets||Android TV|
|Fire Tablets||Apple TV|
|Vizio SmartCast TVs|
|Xbox 360/Xbox One|