Any ideas on how to connect for the first time?

I'm ready to just return the hub and give up. I reached out to support and they provided some steps to recover, but haven't heard back in 24 hours.

It connects to the network, I get a link light on the router and the hubitat shows blue. It gets an IP and if I go to that IP like this: ipaddress:8081

It does come up. I did a factory reset from this interface and downloaded the latest update. Then, when I go to ipaddress:8081 setup
It just says " Update failed, please try again"

I tried unplugging it, factory resetting it again, soft rebooting, and this is always the result.

When going to portal it can't find the hub, I can't find it using any of the advanced methods.

One item of note, when I bring up the base URL, it shows the hardware version, etc and the software version is blank.

Ideas? Did I get a dud?

Those seem to be telling you the same story.. there's no Platform software. While the possibility of the hub being a dud is not zero, the most likely cause is the hub can't get to Hubitat's download server(s).

There's no Platform software (LED is always blue, never green) and thus it never "phone's home" to record the address.

There's a lot of clues that suggest the hub has no access to the Internet.

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When I click to download the update, it says success. It’s when I return to the page it says error.

I can’t fathom how it is possible that it doesn’t have internet access. It’s plugged directly into the router and I can access it from my computer no do it’s on the network.

I suppose I can try plugging into the router directly and ensure the ports have internet access.