Roku today announced the launch of its own movie channel. The Roku Channel will be available on all Roku streaming players, sticks, and TVs, in turn connecting users to hundreds of movies. The channel will include licensed material, as well as movies aggregated from other publishers.
The Roku Channel
Roku currently offers an easy way to access numerous streaming services, including Netflix and YouTube. The introduction of The Roku Channel will see movies licensed from studios such as Lionsgate, MGM, Paramount, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Warner Brothers, appearing alongside a number of TV shows.
The new channel will be entirely funded by advertising. Roku claims to want to make watching ad-supported content less painful than we’re used too. Roku CMO Matthew Anderson explains that “The main things were focused on is limiting the commercial breaks, and the timing and placement.”
Hopefully, this means adverts will be tasteful, and respectful to the content they’re placed in, both content and time wise. In addition, they claim the service won’t repeat the same advert endlessly, driving viewers to insanity. This is a major bonus in and of itself.
Roku also recently filed for an IPO through which it seeks to raise $100 million. The service currently has over 15 million subscribers, accounting for 37% of all streaming media services in the U.S. This is up from 4.8 million just three years ago.
We’ll have to wait and see how the introduction of The Roku Channel affects advertising revenue. Until the launch of the dedicated channel, Netflix accounted for third of all Roku streaming hours. Furthermore, YouTube, another heavily viewed channel, doesn’t give Roku any cut of the advertising profits gleaned through the service.
This gives a clear indicator as to why Roku has finally moved to introduce its own channel. Investors will demand returns.
The Roku Channel launches today across all supported Roku devices.
Will you use The Roku Channel over other established streaming channels? Or is it simply another option in the vast list of channels? Let us know your thoughts on the new streaming channel below.