Roku adds premium subscription options to its Roku Channel

roku channel premium subscriptions the lifestyle

As expected, Roku has launched the availability of premium subscriptions within its Roku Channel, starting Monday, January 28. The update will start with select Roku devices in the U.S. All supported devices are expected to receive the update in the coming weeks, beginning with Roku players and concluding with Roku TVs. However, the company has said that premium subscriptions via the Roku Channel are not available for Samsung TVs. It did not offer an explanation for this restriction.

Roku users with eligible devices will have the opportunity to browse, trial, and subscribe to popular streaming services like Starz, Showtime, Epix. In all, Roku will have over 25 premium subscription options to choose from, though the company did not say what these options would cost. Subscribing can be done with a single click, and there will be one consolidated monthly bill for all subscriptions.

The list of available premium channels include:

  • Baeble Music
  • CollegeHumor’s Dropout
  • CuriosityStream
  • Fandor Spotlight
  • FitFusion
  • The Great Courses Signature Collection
  • Grokker
  • Hi-Yah!
  • Hopster
  • Lifetime Movie Club
  • Dox
  • LOLFlicks
  • Monsters and Nightmares
  • Magnolia Selects
  • Warriors & Gangsters presented by Magnolia Pictures
  • MHz Choice
  • Noggin
  • Shout! Factory TV
  • Smithsonian Channel Plus
  • Stingray Karaoke
  • Tastemade
  • Viewster Anime
  • ZooMoo

Premium subscriptions are compatible with Roku’s web interface, where you can also sign up and manage your subscription. Because the Roku Channel is now available via Roku’s app on iOS and Android, subscriptions are portable too.

The Roku Channel already offers a compelling collection of over 10,000 free, ad-supported movies and TV episodes, plus many Roku users already maintain a subscription to Netflix. It will be interesting to see just how much of an appetite viewers have for this additional content. Roku’s user base likely has a significant number of cord-cutters and cord-nevers, thanks to its position as one of the least expensive streaming devices on the market. If these users are trying to find cheap alternatives to cable and satellite, are they prepared to sign up for individual monthly subscriptions that can equal, if not exceed the bill they used to get?

Nonetheless, Roku has also acquired a massive fan following for its ease of use, and openness to any content provider that wants to launch its own Roku channel. Offering these premium subscriptions is consistent with that approach, if nothing else, and we suspect users will appreciate having more choices when it comes to what they can watch.

Home Theater

TCL drops the price of its 75-inch 6-Series 4K Roku TV to $1,500

March is a great time for TV deals, and we've got a whopper: TCL has taken $300 off the price of its superb 75-inch 6-Series 4K HDR Roku TV, making it $1,500. That's the lowest price ever on this affordable TV.
Home Theater

Hulu vs. Amazon Prime Video: Which streaming service is best for you?

It's hard to dispute Netflix's leadership in on-demand streaming video, it's not alone. Two great alternatives are Amazon Prime Video and Hulu; each with its strengths and weaknesses. Which one is better? We pick the winner.
Home Theater

How to connect your Roku device to your hotel room’s TV

Staying at a hotel, but can't bear to be parted from your favorite streaming shows and movies? Take them with you with our complete guide to using your Roku on the road when staying at a hotel.
Movies & TV

No TV? No problem. Here's how to watch the Final Four online

Whether you want to watch the Big Dance on your phone or on your smart TV, we have the lowdown on all the ways to watch March Madness you can handle. Grab your foam finger and some nachos.
Movies & TV

Comcast launches Xfinity Flex, a $5-a-month service aimed at cord cutters

For $5 a month, Xfinity Flex gives existing Xfinity internet subscribers a 4K- and HDR-ready set-top box that can stream video from YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, as well as free TV from apps like Cheddar and ESPN3.
Home Theater

Here’s how to watch Apple’s March 25 product reveal event live

It's almost here: Apple's much anticipated March 25 event, where it is widely expected to announce several streaming services, including on-demand and live TV with original programming. Here's how to watch it live.
Product Review

Audio-Technica's M50xBT headphones bring signature studio sound to the streets

Audio pros may balk at cutting the cord on studio headphones, but it’s hard to argue with these results. Audio-Technica’s wireless ATH-M50xBT offer massive battery life and killer sound you can take anywhere.
Movies & TV

HBO’s Deadwood movie rustles up a trailer and a release date

This spring, HBO's long-awaited Deadwood movie will explore what happened 10 years after the events of HBO's award-winning drama, giving the series a finale 13 years after the show was canceled.
Movies & TV

Apple’s next big event is set for March 25: Here’s what you can expect

Apple's next big event takes place on March 25 in Cupertino, California. The company is expected to make several announcements related to its services, including Apple TV, so follow our guide to get ready for the big event.
Home Theater

Kanopy privacy breach reveals which movies members have been streaming

Free video streaming site, Kanopy, has been inadvertently publishing millions of lines of web log data for days, according to a new security report. A bad actor could guess a person's identity and see what they've been watching.
Home Theater

March Madness deal alert: Get a 43-inch LG 4K HDR TV for just $270

March is a great time to find a deal on a new TV, and this one is worth every penny: Walmart is selling LG's 43-inch 43UK6300PUE, a very capable 4K HDR Smart TV, for almost 50 percent off the regular price, at $270.

Apple’s Beats to reportedly release truly wireless PowerBeats earphones in April

Beats will reportedly release a truly wireless PowerBeats earphones next month, following the announcement of Apple's new AirPods. The second-generation AirPods received the new H1 chip, which is also expected to power the new PowerBeats.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Robotic companions and computer-aided karaoke

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it's fun to gawk!
Movies & TV

The best new movie trailers: Deadwood, John Wick 3, Shazam, and more

Everyone loves a good trailer, but keeping up with what's new isn't easy. That's why we round up the best ones for you. This week, it's new trailers for John Wick: Chapter 3, Deadwood, Shazam!, and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.