Smart TV set maker Vizio said it has added 30 new free linear TV channels to its SmartCast Home platform.
Among the new channels are USA Today, CBC News, Fubo Sports Network, TMZ and Hollywire.
TV usage has been surging as people stay home to avoid spreading the Coronavirus and Vizio said viewing sessions on SmartCast were up 57% during the last three weeks of March, with free, ad-supported apps and streaming services seeing a 59% increase over the same period.
“More people are discovering our free content offerings, and more people are making it part of their daily routines right now,” said Mike O’Donnell, senior VP, platform business at Vizio. “We recognize the important role that TV plays in the home, especially when families are being asked to stay inside. It’s important for us to deliver popular content to consumers and we are focused on continually expanding additional free and premium options for our Vizio SmartCast TV customers.”
In addition to news and information, viewers can get cooking tips from Hungry and Food52, sci-fi content from Dust, cult classics on CONtv and documentaries on Magellan TVNow and Docudrama under the Free Channels row on the SmartCast Home Screen.
Vizio’s WatchFree service with Pluto features more than 150 free streaming channels, including the exclusive Choppertown, added recently
Vizio SmartCast also offers access to subscription services including Disney+, Hulu, Prime Video, YouTubeTV and Netflix.
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Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.