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Roku looks to make live sports easier to find

One of the biggest pain points when it comes to watching live sports these days is just figuring out where to watch things. And it doesn’t matter if you’ve got cable or satellite, or if you’re streaming everything. Some events are on linear networks like ESPN, or the broadcast affiliates. Others are spread across the multiple streaming services, like ESPN+ (tons of sports), Paramount+ (soccer, mostly), Peacock (the British Premier League), and more. Thursday night NFL games are on Amazon Prime Video. Even Apple is getting into the game, with the MLS switching to Apple TV+ in 2023.

Roku users are about to get a little help from their platform of choice, with a new top-level menu item that shares a name with the brilliant 1983 Huey Lewis and the News album.

Live sports on Roku.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Sports. That’s it. And in that menu item, you’ll find a few things. Live sports that are currently on. Or sporting events that are coming up. Or the various apps (Roku calls them “channels”) on which you can find said sports.

“We know that keeping track of where sports are being streamed has only become more fragmented over the past few years,” Alex Hill, director of live and sports for Roku, said in a blog post. “Watching your favorite teams should be simple, so we’ve made it a priority to build out a more seamless and streamlined way to discover and watch sports on our platform. Sports are a vital part of the streaming experience, and we will continue to make enhancements to that experience, like adding more supported providers and finding new ways for our users to follow their favorite teams.”

Roku says it’s also adding deeper integration for sports into its search and voice features.

More on Roku

And not to be left out, The Roku Channel — which is Roku’s free advertising-based streaming channel — is getting sports-related shows, too, including The Rich Eisen Show, and Emeril Tailgates, with longtime TV chef Emeril Bagasse.

Channels supported by the new Roku sports section at launch include Apple TV, DirecTV, Fox Sports, FuboTV, Paramount+, Peacock, Amazon Prime Video, Sling, The Roku Channel, TNT, TBS, and TruTV. And because now Roku is, first and foremost, an advertising company, you’ll see ads from GNC sponsoring the College Football Sports Zone the rest of November.

Look for the new sports features across Roku players and Roku TVs any time now.

Phil Nickinson
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