With the revenue it makes selling advertising on its platform already up 86% in the second quarter, Roku announced the launch of yet another potentially lucrative extension to its popular Roku Channel AVOD offering.
Already up and running today, the new “Kids & Family” portal includes 7,000 movies and episodic TV installments from programmers including Hasbro Company, DHX Media, Happy Kids TV, Lionsgate, Mattel, Moonbug and pocket.watch, among others. Brands include Care Bears, The Cat in the Hat, Leapfrog, Little Baby Bum, My Little Pony, Rev & Roll, Super Mario Brothers and Thomas and Friends.
For users paying for premium channels, the Kids and Family portal will also include subscription-based kids and family content from partners such as Hopster, Noggin and Zoomoo, as well as children’s entertainment from services such as HBO and Starz
There’s also a bit of exclusive content, such as five episodes of the pocket.watch series Ryan’s World.
Roku said its ad load will be only 40% of what viewers would find on linear television. Roku has also set up a PIN-based system for parents to set controls on what their kids view.
“We recognize that it can be a challenge to find quality kids and family entertainment across multiple streaming channels, particularly free, ad-supported options,” said Rob Holmes, VP of programming and engagement for Roku.
For its part, Netflix has made a significant push into kids programming, and The Walt Disney Company will certainly challenge for that viewership share when Disney+ debuts later this year.
But in terms of the free-to-consumer ad-supported market, Roku’s robust kids play will be tough to beat, offering a no-cost programming option in an ecosystem Netflix and Disney will have to go through to reach their consumers.