Roku made some significant improvements to its search functionality today, vastly expanding the number of streaming services than can be searched directly from the set-top box’s native search. More than 50 streaming content providers are now included, up from just six previously.
Today’s additions include several news outlets allowing for a wide variety of searchable content. New partners include ABC, CBS, Fox News, and NBC, allowing you to filter results by date to yield video headlines from a particular event or moment. Other services added today include Comedy Central, Disney, Freeform, MTV, Nickelodeon, Vudu, and many others.
While the Roku is a great device to discover all kinds of online video content, search functionality across the device’s wide selection of services has been limited up to now. Centralizing apps through the Roku Search feature improves the user experience quite a bit, something Roku has called “a big time and money saver,” so adding more services to the pile is key to a better user experience.
Another nice feature for services that support Roku native searching is the ability to discern whether or not content is included in whatever subscriptions you might have. This is helpful to those who subscribe to multiple services: while you may pay extra for a video on one service, it could be free on another. With the addition of several new services, this feature is even more powerful and possibly money-saving, too.
While Roku has added quite a few “channels” in today’s update, there are still a few notable services missing, such as CNN, for example. While Roku did not give any indication as to whether that service will eventually make it to Roku Search, it did tell users to “stay tuned for more Roku Search additions in the coming months.”