The popularity of free live streaming services is one of the factors behind the cord-cutting revolution. Pluto TV, owned by ViacomCBS, is a real phenomenon which led to other companies launching competitors. Advertiser funded video on demand, better known as AVOD, doesn’t get as much mainstream attention, but consumers are using these services a lot.
Roku has entered this space in recent years by placing live channels on the Roku channel. The company is now extending the idea much further.
Roku announced the launch from the Live TV Zone this week. In a blog post, the company said the launch was focused on what it describes as the 61% of Roku users who don’t have traditional pay-TV because those people expressed interest in watching news and other live broadcasts.
The Live TV area still offers access to the Live TV Channel Guide while allowing users access through the Roku Channel to services such as Hulu + Live TV, fuboTV, Philo, Sling, and YouTube TV.
“Live TV Channel Guide gives you access to over 200 free live linear TV channels covering a wide range of genres including News, Sports, Kids & Family, Lifestyle, Entertainment in Spanish, etc., in an easy-to-navigate on-screen guide experience,” Roku said in its blog post.
Roku cited a survey he conducted with the National Research Group, published last September, titled “The Decade of Streaming.The survey reached several conclusions about cable cutters, finding that one in four consumers were cable cutters, that cable cutters paid less than half a month than traditional pay-TV viewers, and that cable cutting is no longer a phenomenon limited to just the young.While 25% of Gen Z have cut the cord, older generations have abandoned traditional pay TV at similar rates.
Cord cutters also watch a lot, according to the survey.
“39% of consumers who cut the cord in the past 12 months report watching more or as much as they used to, and all cord cutters spend an average of 3 hours more per week streaming than traditional pay-TV viewers (10 p.m. versus 7 p.m.),” the report said.
The report also found that audiences looking to “join the conversation and watch something everyone’s talking about” are significantly more likely to choose streaming shows than traditional pay-TV shows, with a 66% difference. at 22%.
Stephen Silver, technology editor for The National Interest, is a journalist, essayist and film critic, who also contributes to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and connect today. Co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.