The Roku Channel Begins Offering Premium Subscriptions Today
Earlier this month, Roku announced it would begin offering premium channel subscriptions through The Roku Channel by the end of the month, and it just made it. Starting today, viewers can sign up for a selection of streaming services through The Roku Channel, adding new services with one click. Services purchased this way will be grouped into one convenient monthly bill, and can only be watched through The Roku Channel.
At launch, Roku's biggest offerings are Showtime, Starz, and Epix. It lists over 25 partner services in total, including Fandor Spotlight, Lifetime Movie Club, and Smithsonian Channel Plus. Anyone signing up for Showtime, Starz, or Epix by the end of March will get a 30-day trial.
Not all Roku devices will be able to access premium subscriptions right away, as doing so requires a software update. Set-top boxes will get the update first, followed by Roku TVs. For mobile viewing, the Roku app on iOS devices will begin offering The Roku Channel today, while Android users can expect an app update in mid-February.
Channel aggregation services are expected to take off, as they make it easier for consumers to manage their OTT options and payments. Amazon Prime Video Channels has had the are to itself before this. Amazon offers more premium options than Roku (including HBO, Cinemax, CBS All Access, NBA LeaguePass, BritBox, and many more), but it's only open to Amazon Prime customers.
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