Hate U was the first commercial single to be released from Prince’s 17th album The Gold Experience, the first album to be credited to (The Most Beautiful Girl In The World had been released the previous year, but at the time, no album was attached to the single; P. Control and Dolphin had also received promo-only releases prior to this).
It was released two weeks prior to the album (the same day Rock ‘N’ Roll Is Alive! (And It Lives In Minneapolis) was recorded), and was released worldwide. A maxi-single followed a week later. The b-side was a remix, Hate U (Quiet Night Mix by Eric Leeds), which was unavailable elsewhere.
The maxi-single also contained Hate U (Extended Remix), containing entirely new lyrics by Prince (as ) (in the same style as Mustang Mix or The Good Life (Big City Remix)). The Japanese single also contained Endorphinmachine (also taken from The Gold Experience), marking its only appearance on a commercial single.
The single reached number 12 on the US Billboard Pop Chart, and number 3 on the Billboard R&B Chart.
The maxi-single is often referred to as "The Hate Experience", which is written on the cover (similar to The Beautiful Experience). A planned series of "Experience" maxi-singles connected to The Gold Experience was abandoned following this single.