In an important move that extends a bridge beyond its own streaming device ecosystem, Roku said The Roku Channel, its free, ad-supported VOD offering, is set to debut this summer on “select” Samsung smart TVs.
Those models were not specified in today's announcement, but it's expected that they will include millions of smart TVs that run Samsung's Tizen operating system.
The Roku Channel is a curated AVOD service that debuted last fall on Roku TVs and Roku players. The expansion on Samsung will extend the availability of The Roku Channel and possibly pave the way for further expansions to other streaming platforms that aren’t powered by the Roku OS.
Roku said The Roku Channel, which today features “hundreds” of movies and TV shows, is a top 20 channel on its own platform. Roku has previously said that it has also risen to be the number three ad-supported channel on its Roku platform, with Scott Rosenberg, GM of Roku’s Platforms business, calling it a “material contributor” to the video inventory that Roku sells during the company's recent earnings call.
Roku noted that The Roku Channel’s ad load per programming hour is about half as compared to traditional linear TV.
“By broadening our distribution of this app to other viewing platforms such as Samsung, the #1 TV maker in the U.S., we are able to engage millions more consumers with free ad-supported entertainment,” Rosenberg said, in a statement.