Having a credit card registered with Roku is about to make a lot more sense. The company has added the ability to subscribe to streaming subscription services directly from the Roku Channel home page. The Roku channel is an option that has to be added to the Roku at the moment, but is bit by bit becoming the unofficial home screen of the Roku. It features free movies and select TV series from Roku streaming partners. After its initial roll out it also added access to live news feeds built on Roku channels available on the device. Now with the addition of subscription options the Roku Channel is on its way to becoming Roku’s town square.
The idea of offering one click subscription sign ups should remind people of Amazon’s channels program, which like Roku’s planned feature allows users to sign up for subscription services through the device. The convenience has led Amazon Channels to be the leading way people subscribe to HBO Now.
HBO is not a featured app in Roku’s roll out of the program. Customers who sign up for services through Roku will be billed from Roku instead of the individual apps. Users will be able to access the apps via their Roku accounts online.
The announcement follows what has been a trend with the three biggest set-top streaming platforms. Apple TV, Roku and Amazon all have their own flavor of a homepage/content store in addition to the app stores for their respective devices. Apple’s TV app was the first to pull programming from partner apps and put it in one place, while the Amazon Channels app was the first to allow users to sign up for services via one additional interface. The idea seems aimed at helping users understand a little more about what their devices actually do outside of providing a portal for household name apps like Netflix.
The new features will be rolling out in early 2019.
The coming Roku channel features are listed bellow:
Free for all users
The Roku Channel will continue to include thousands of free, ad-supported titles available without a subscription and is available on a range of devices; users do not need any subscriptions or memberships in order to access quality free, ad-supported content
•Wide variety of subscription partners: Premium Subscription partners at launch include SHOWTIME, Starz, EPIX, Baeble Music, CollegeHumor’s DROPOUT, CuriosityStream, FitFusion, The Great Courses Signature Collection, Hopster, Magnolia Selects presented by Magnolia Pictures, MHz Choice, NOGGIN, Smithsonian Channel Plus, Tastemade, Viewster Anime and more
•One-click subscriptions: Customers will be able to start a free trial or subscribe to new Premium Subscriptions with one click using their existing Roku account information once they visit the subscription page
•Free trials: All premium content can be trialed for at least seven days
•Trial reminders: A reminder will be sent before each free trial expires and billing starts
•Single bill: Subscriptions will be managed directly from my.roku.com. Customers will receive one monthly bill for all premium subscriptions on The Roku Channel