Roku streaming devices and TVs have offered free movies, TV shows, and “live” channels for a while now through the pre-installed Roku Channel. Starting today, the Roku Channel now has local news stations.
The Roku Channel, which is freely accessible on all Roku devices (as well as Android and iPhone/iPad), already has many “live” channels — most of which are looping livestreams of a certain show or genre, like Hell’s Kitchen and Love Nature. There are a few news channels too, including ABC News Live and WeatherNation, and now Roku is partnering with NBCUniversal to add some local NBC stations to the list. This is the first time that local news channels have been available on the Roku Channel.
The new channels include NBC New York News, NBC Los Angeles News, NBC Chicago News, NBC Philadelphia News, NBC Dallas/Fort Worth News, NBC Washington, D.C. News, NBC Connecticut News, and NBC South Florida News. They should be similar to what is accessible through an OTA antenna or cable subscription in each local TV market, except that the cable/OTA stations usually broadcast more than just news. You can also watch one of the new channels even if you live in a different area.
It’s worth noting that all those live channels were already available through the Peacock streaming service, even if you only had a free account. However, with this rollout, Roku owners don’t need to download another app or create any new accounts. The ‘NBC News NOW’ live channel was already available through Peacock and the Roku Channel, which focuses more on US national news.
Roku says more NBC local channels will be added to the Roku Channel “in the coming months.” It’s not clear if local news from other organizations will also be added, but some of them already have dedicated Roku applications (like WRAL in Raleigh and WSB Channel 2 in Atlanta).
Source: Roku Newsroom