Roku has out-executed larger companies and leaned on an unusual corporate culture to gain a $45 billion valuation. Roku batted away early acquisition offers and skepticism from Wall Street bankers to go public in 2017. Roku founder Anthony Wood is now spending much of his time thinking about the company’s content ambitions.
YouTube TV has developed a new technical workaround as the dispute between the streaming TV service and Roku shows no signs of coming to a quick resolution. The new feature, introduced Friday, May 7, provides access to the YouTube TV service from within the core YouTube app. Users can access it by clicking on a “Go to YouTube TV” button on the main YouTube app.
Roku kept rolling in the first quarter, reporting a 35% rise in active accounts, to 53.6 million, along with stronger-than-expected financial results. Revenue grew 79% compared with the same quarter a year ago, hitting $574.2 million, far higher than the consensus forecast by Wall Street analysts for $490.6 million.
Roku has followed through on its threat to remove streaming bundle YouTube TV from its platform, in a dispute it has characterized as more about principle than dollars. The streaming provider had warned on Monday that it would unplug YouTube TV unless the Google-owned streaming outlet agreed to certain curbs on search and data use. It charges that YouTube has leveraged Google’s massive resources to manipulate search results in a way that compromises Roku users’ experience and hoards sensitive customer data.
Simmering tensions between Roku and Google have erupted into a full-blown fight. On Monday, Roku began warning YouTube TV customers that Google’s internet pay-TV service may go dark on the Roku platform soon — alleging that Google in seeking anticompetitive terms.
Roku has recruited another former employee from Quibi, the now-defunct mobile streaming subscription startup that closed its doors in 2020 just six months after launching. Lisa Flores, previously marketing lead at Quibi, is now overseeing social media for The Roku Channel, the company’s streaming service that aggregates free, ad-supported and subscription content.
Roku’s deal for Nielsen’s advertising video business boosts the size of its potential market and makes it more valuable to programmers going directly after consumers, an analyst at KeyBanc Capital Markets said Wednesday. Earlier this week, streaming platform Roku said it was buying Nielsen’s Advanced Video Advertising unit, which includes technology that makes it easier for advertisers to target specific audiences.
In a move that will bolster Roku’s advertising capabilities, the streaming company has acquired Nielsen’s Advanced Video Advertising unit. Terms for the deal were not disclosed. A person familiar with the transaction described it as “not material” to the overall business of Roku, whose market value is $53 billion. Nevertheless, the acquisition is a meaningful step forward for the streaming potentate. The company will now be able to serve viewers “dynamically inserted” ads on live, linear programming, opening up new horizons for its burgeoning ad business.
While late to the ad game compared to the likes of Roku and Amazon, original equipment manufacturers like Vizio, Samsung and LG are hurriedly building out their advertising businesses as ad dollars flow into connected TV.
Roku continues to ride the streaming wave, reporting fourth-quarter results ahead of Wall Street expectations, with revenue shooting up 58% from a year ago to just shy of $650 million. Operating income swung from a loss in the year-earlier period to a profit of $65.2 million.
In a classic case of coopetition, Roku inked a deal with Amazon to bring the IMDb TV free, ad-supported streaming service to the Roku platform in the U.S. The IMDb TV service competes for viewers — and ad dollars — with the Roku Channel, a similar ad-supported VOD service. Under Roku’s standard distribution agreements, it takes 30% of ad inventory on partner channels but the terms of the deal with Amazon for IMDb TV were not disclosed.
Roku created its business solely as a hub for other streaming services, but has recently begun piling up content for its free Roku Channel. With the acquisition, Roku will acquire 75 staccato-style programs with some very big names attached. Idris Elba, Kevin Hart, Liam Hemsworth, Anna Kendrick, Nicole Richie, Chrissy Teigen and Lena Waithe have all been in Quibi shows. That includes more than 12 shows that never aired on Quibi before it was shuttered.
Quibi is in advanced talks to sell its content catalog to Roku, as the short-form streaming service winds down its operations following an unsuccessful run.
The maker of the leading streaming-media player has taken up brash negotiating tactics over its terms to carry services like WarnerMedia’s HBO Max and NBCUniversal’s Peacock. At issue is how to divvy up the spoils of video streaming — and who will reign in the new order of entertainment distribution.
At long last, HBO Max will finally be on Roku beginning Thursday. The long-awaited deal comes nine days before Wonder Woman 1984 drops on the streaming service. Roku users will be able to download HBO Max from the Roku channel store and subscribe directly on their Roku device to access all of HBO Max.
Roku has removed Charter’s Spectrum TV app from its Channel Store in the latest carriage dispute involving the streaming device maker. The app, which allows Charter’s Spectrum subscribers to watch live TV and on-demand programming, is still available for Roku owners who have previously downloaded it. However, you can no longer download it from the Roku Channel Store
Tegna today said it has completed an update of its stations’ over-the-top streaming apps on Roku, “enhancing the experience for viewers.” Tegna also announced it is planning to launch OTT streaming apps for its stations on Amazon Fire TV by the end of 2020. When the rollout on Amazon Fire TV is complete, Tegna stations’ […]
AT&T is nearly five months out from the launch of HBO Max and the service still doesn’t have distribution agreements in place with Amazon or Roku. CEO John Stankey, speaking Monday at the WSJ Tech Live event, said the impasses demonstrate how platform companies, not network providers, have begun to hamstring access to apps and services.
Today’s launch includes the debut of LX News, a weekday newscast targeted to Gen Z and millennials.
On Friday, Roku and NBCUniversal reached a deal bringing Peacock, NBCU’s recently launched streaming service, to Roku, while also keeping a number of other NBC apps on the platform.
Roku, a major streaming gatekeeper, has reached an impasse with NBCUniversal over its nascent Peacock service and a swath of NBCU apps is about to go dark as a result. As soon as overnight Friday into Saturday, 11 national “TV Everywhere” apps, which are available to pay-TV subscribers, will disappear due to the dispute. Dozens of other local apps from NBC and Telemundo stations, which are available only to Roku viewers in those local markets, are also hanging in the balance.
Shares of Roku Inc. surged over 11% on Wednesday after Citi initiated coverage of the streaming video company with a “buy” rating, while Netflix also rallied more than 11%. Roku and Netflix are among several technology-related companies that have benefited as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, with people around the world spending more time at home.
The company’s CFO proclaims the top OTT platform still plays its ‘traditional’ Switzerland role in the streaming wars. But analysts say it now has too many advertising and subscription agendas.
With the incumbent OTT operating systems at impasse with Peacock and HBO Max, Google finally has its opening into the living room, LightShed Partners says.