The Roku Channel expands to include over 100 live channels, adds a Live TV guide – ProWellTech
Roku is expanding its range of free linear and live channels which is part of its free TV channel and hub, The Roku Channel. In the United States, Roku’s customers will now be able to stream from over 100 live channels, including those that offer free access to news, sports, movies, TV, programming for kids and families, lifestyle content and programming in Spanish. Along with the expansion, Roku is also launching a new Live TV guide to make navigating its free content easier.
The update would appear to position Roku as a more direct challenger to compete with free video streaming services, including Pluto TV and XUMO. The former was acquired by Viacom (now ViacomCBS) in 2019 for $ 340 million, while XUMO was purchased by Comcast earlier this year for over $ 100 million.
Instead, Roku is working in partnership with those companies: his free live channels include content that is provided by XUMO and Pluto TV.
Also among the new additions are a Reuters video news channel and the streaming networks of A&E Lively Place and Crime360.
Roku has been rapidly expanding the Roku Channel hub since its launch in September 2017. While initially focusing on offering a selection of free, ad-supported films – similar for example to “Movies on Us” or Vudu’s TUBI, ad example – has grown to include a range of free content, including TV, news, sports and even live channels, as well as additional premium subscriptions.
Today, the hub offers over 100,000 titles, including free movies and TVs that reach Roku’s estimated 36 million users.
The hub makes Roku the best choice for wire cutters, as it centralizes access to free streaming content. Advertising-supported content, meanwhile, contributes to Roku’s bottom line. The company today generates more money from its platform business than its device sales. Even in the midst of the pandemic that saw advertisers retreat, Roku reported the platform’s first quarter revenue of $ 232.56 million, which includes announcements and license fees, compared to only $ 88.21 million in device sales.
Roku says the hub continues to grow significantly faster than its overall platform, with more than 100% increase in streaming hours year-over-year in the first quarter.
The launch of the Live TV Channel Guide will make it easier to access the expanded lineup’s channels via a new “Live TV” box on The Roku Channel. In addition, users can press left on the remote at any time to view the guide.
“Now more than ever, it’s important for our users to have easy access to free content, such as news, and the ability to find it quickly,” said Ashley Hovey, director of AVOD Growth at Roku, in a statement. “We are excited to enhance the streaming experience through a Live Channel TV guide and bring more free content from The Roku Channel to the fore.”