Pluto TV Tops 100 Channels

ViacomCBS’s ad-supported VOD platform, Pluto TV, has reached 101 channels with the addition of reality show “Secret Dealers” and “Crime Investigation Australia.”

“Dealers” showcases homeowners faced with the decision whether to sell or keep their family heirlooms. “Crime Investigation Australia” uncovers the country’s most horrific crimes.

“Since launching a year and a half ago with only 13 channels in the U.K., 100 channels was a first goal to offer viewers a healthy, diverse line-up,” Olivier Jollet, managing director Europe at Pluto TV, said in a statement.

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Pluto TV launched in the U.K. in October 2018 — the first foreign territory outside of the U.S. Pluto TV is currently available in the U.K. via Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Apple TV, Roku, Now TV and in the iOS App Store and Google Play Store, among others.

Fubo Sports Network Launches on Pluto TV

The fubo Sports Network, the live, free-to-consumer linear sports network, has launched on ViacomCBS-owned AVOD service Pluto TV.

The launch makes the fubo Sports Network available on more than 75 million devices through a distribution network that also includes free platforms LG Channels, Samsung TV Plus, The Roku Channel, Vizio Channels and Xumo, as well as fuboTV’s subscription service.

Launched last fall by live TV streaming platform fuboTV, the fubo Sports Network has launched original talent-driven programming produced by fuboTV and distribution of a fuboTV-owned channel off of its platform. In addition to its own original programming (“No Chill with Gilbert Arenas,” “Call It a Night with Julie Stewart-Binks,” “Drinks with Binks” and “The Cooligans”), the fubo Sports Network also carries live sports and original programming from partners including USA Today, FanDuel, The Players Tribune, Stadium, VSiN and CampusLore.

“We’re excited to bring fubo Sports Network to even more sports fans through Pluto TV, the largest free streaming distributor in the country,” said Min Kim, VP, business development, fuboTV, in a statement. “Since launching fubo Sports Network less than a year ago, we’ve built a differentiated offering for a dedicated audience who tune in for live games, original sports programming, sports docs and movies. We look forward to bringing Pluto TV fans 24/7 sports coverage on and off the field with a unique point of view.”

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“In challenging times like these, with many live sporting events on hold, our current channel lineup featuring classic live sporting events, news, documentaries/series and sports-themed movies, have proven to be a great alternative for fans in search of what to watch,” said Amy Kuessner, Pluto TV’s SVP, content strategy and global partnerships, in a statement. “We are incredibly excited to welcome the fubo Sports Network to Pluto TV as it brings even greater dimension to our sports programming and fanfare to all who revel in watching the competitive arena.”

Pluto TV Adds 24 Channels in German-Speaking Countries

ViacomCBS’s ad-supported VOD platform, Pluto TV, has added 24 content channels for distribution in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Acquired last year for $340 million, Pluto TV with 75 channels represents ViacomCBS’s aggressively global drive for AVOD distribution competing against Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+.

Channel additions include “Pop-Up” channels featuring iconic brands such as “SpongeBob SquarePants,” “iCarly,” “Blue’s Clues,” “Victorious,” “Bubble Guppies” and “Sam & Cat,” among others. In addition, MTV channels “Dating,” “The Hills” and “Totally Turtles” are now available in English language for German viewers.

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“Within the last four months alone, we have been able to increase our channel offering by a third of the entire portfolio,” Olivier Jollet, managing director of Europe, said in a statement. “This a major step in pushing Pluto TV to the next level.”

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TiVo Partnership Offers Easier Access to Pluto TV

TiVo will offer easier access to ViacomCBS-owned AVOD service Pluto TV via a new partnership.

The deal offers one-click access to Pluto TV’s programming.

Pluto TV will be rolling out in the coming weeks on TiVo EDGE, TiVo’s premium 4K Ultra High Definition (UHD) media device, with versions designed to work with HD antenna or digital cable. Pluto TV will also soon become available on the upcoming TiVo Stream 4K device.

“Launching Pluto TV in an integrated way with TiVo aligns perfectly with our goal to provide a friction-free viewer experience with our distribution partners,” said Pluto TV CEO Tom Ryan in a statement. “Today, over 22 million people a month in the U.S. tune in to stream our programming which spans across all genres of movies, news, TV shows, sports, and documentaries, and we look forward to reaching many more together as part of the TiVo+ video network.”

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“We launched TiVo+ because we wanted to bring entertainment together in one easy place for viewers, and this partnership allows viewers to easily discover an awesome array of 50,000 hours of free programming from Pluto TV via TiVo+,” said TiVo president and CEO Dave Shull in a statement. “Now we can definitively say we’re catering to everyone’s tastes and preferences, making finding, watching and enjoying something they love easier than ever before.”

Pluto TV, Verizon Ink AVOD Streaming Deal

ViacomCBS’s ad-supported VOD service Pluto TV continues its aggressive distribution strategy with a reported deal with Verizon encompassing both mobile and pay-TV.

Verizon, which has struggled to create a proprietary over-the-top video strategy, would use Pluto TV as a entry point into the AVOD market, which includes Fox-owned Tubi, Crackle, Shout! Factory TV, The Roku Channel, Xumo and IMDb TV, among others.

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Verizon, which has 116 million wireless customers and 10 million combined FiOS TV and FiOS Internet subscribers, failed spectacularly with the short-lived go90 mobile streaming video service that resulted in a $1 billion loss for the telecom.

For Pluto TV, which ViacomCBS acquired last year for $340 million, the Verizon deal mirrors other recent deals with TiVo and AMC Networks. Pluto claims more than 20 million monthly active users, 170 content partners for largely catalog programming and more than 30 distribution partners, including Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Comcast’s Xfinity and Xbox 360.

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Pluto TV Adds AMC Network Channels

Viacom’s AVOD service Pluto TV May 1 launched a suite of original AMC Networks channels, including Stories by AMC, Slightly Off by IFC, All Reality WE tv and The Walking Dead en Español.

The launch of these dedicated channels will give Pluto TV customers access to such AMC Networks content as “The Walking Dead,” “Fear the Walking Dead,” “Halt and Catch Fire” and “Into the Badlands; IFC’s “Portlandia,” “Documentary Now! and “Brockmire; and WE tv’s “Kendra on Top and “Mary Mary.”

Select programming will also be available on demand as part of Pluto TV’s platform.

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“We are excited to partner with Pluto TV to bring AMC Networks’ acclaimed originals to our fans in new ways, as viewers continue to seek greater flexibility and choice,” said Joshua Reader, president of distribution and development for AMC Networks, in a statement. “Free ad-supported streaming is an emerging category that gives us the ability to complement the content offerings of our linear networks and other new platforms in ways that serve viewers and advertising partners — all part of our strategy to make our content available to as many people as possible in a rapidly evolving media environment. As always, compelling, distinctive and premium content is at the heart of our appeal and that of these new AMCN-Pluto channels.”

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“As we continue to see incredible growth and adoption of Pluto TV worldwide, we are thrilled to join forces with an esteemed and award-winning partner like AMC Networks,” said Amy Kuessner, SVP of content strategy and global partnerships, in a statement. “Pluto TV is the exclusive launch partner of these new channels from AMC Networks, that offer the perfect escape for viewers in search of the very best television programming that’s easy to access and free to stream.”

Stories By AMC will include past seasons of “The Walking Dead” and full series of “Halt and Catch Fire,” “Hap and Leonard” and “Into the Badlands,” as well as select seasons of “Ride with Norman Reedus,” “Making of the Mob” and police drama “Low Winter Sun.” More series joining the channel in the upcoming months include “Fear the Walking Dead,” “Preacher,” “TURN: Washington’s Spies” and “Comic Book Men.”

Slightly Off By IFC includes “Documentary Now!,” “Portlandia,”  “Sherman’s Showcase,” “Brockmire” and “Comedy Bang! Bang!” More IFC series joining the channel in the coming months include “Baroness Von Sketch Show” and “Stan Against Evil.”

All Reality WE tv series include “Kendra on Top,” “L.A. Hair,” “Mary Mary,” “John Edward Cross Country,” “My Fair Wedding,” “Hustle & Soul” and “Tamar & Vince.” Additional WE tv series joining the channel in the coming months include “Bridezillas,” “Million Dollar Matchmaker,” “Cutting It in the ATL” and “Cyndi Lauper: Still So Unusual.”

The Walking Dead en Español channel offers “The Walking Dead” and “Fear the Walking Dead” in Spanish.

Pluto TV Adds to Leadership Team

Pluto TV, the AVOD service owned by Viacom, has appointed Shampa Banerjee chief product officer and Scott Reich SVP of programming.

Banerjee will oversee the product roadmap, designing and developing the experience of users, distribution partners, content partners and advertisers, and will report to CEO Tom Ryan.

Reich will oversee and execute the programming strategy behind Pluto TV’s slate of content.

Shampa Banerjee

With more than 22 million monthly active viewers, Pluto TV includes 250-plus live and original channels and thousands of on-demand movies and television series in partnership with major TV networks, movie studios, publishers and digital media companies.

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Banerjee joins Pluto TV from Eros Digital at Eros International, the “Netflix for Bollywood,” where she grew the service from inception to 150 million global subscribers in 135 countries, according to the Pluto TV release. Prior to that, Banerjee worked for the social collaboration platform Socialtext. Banerjee also held positions as COO/VP engineering and product at Meevee (acquired by Live Universe), CTO at Ziff Davis Media, where she launched the first-ever social network for video gamers, and at AOL.

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“Shampa is a global product leader with deep experience in creating delightful experiences for consumers and rapid growth for the companies she helps lead,” said Ryan in a statement. “We are excited to welcome her to Pluto TV as we continue our mission to entertain the planet.”

Scott Reich

Reich was previously GM at Fullscreen Media, where he set the strategy for the company’s subscription service and managed all aspects of original scripted and unscripted original programming, content licensing, program planning, marketing, creative services, content operations and analytics. He was also previously VP, programming and original content at VEVO and held positions at FUSE, Concert.TV and VH1. He started his career at Magus Entertainment where he worked closely with the manager of the band Aerosmith.

“Scott’s diverse programming and management experience will be a great asset to Pluto TV,” said Ryan in a statement. “Pluto TV was created to solve the problem of what to watch. How, why and where we program our titles is what makes the Pluto experience one-of-a-kind, and it was important that we hired someone with experience in all aspects of content across all platforms.”

Pluto TV Bows in Latin America

ViacomCBS-owned AVOD service Pluto TV has launched in Latin America.

The service is available via web browser at www.pluto.tv, Apple TV, Android TV and mobile device apps for download in iOS and Android in 17 Latin American countries, including Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Paraguay, El Salvador, Uruguay and Venezuela.

“As Pluto TV expands rapidly around the world, I am thrilled to announce that Pluto TV is now available to the consumers in Latin America, one of the world’s most important and biggest markets,” J.C. Acosta, president, ViacomCBS Networks Americas, said in a statement. “This innovative product offering is a great complement to our OTT products. It allows us to continue to entertain audiences across the region and work with our partners to bring this never before seen offering of free streaming television to Latin American audiences.”

“We launched Pluto TV six years ago with a mission to entertain the planet and a vision to become the global leader in free streaming television. Now, we are the leading free streaming TV platform in America and growing rapidly in Europe,” Tom Ryan, CEO and co-founder of Pluto TV, said in a statement. “Today marks a major step forward in our mission, and we are thrilled to offer people across Latin America, one of the world’s largest markets, access to our popular streaming TV service.”

Pluto TV Latin America has 24 curated channels and will continue to add new channels on a monthly basis for the next 12 months to reach more than 70 channels of streaming entertainment programming in Spanish, according to the ViacomCBS release. Pluto TV Latin America has already entered into partnerships with more than 60 major media and content providers, building a library of 12,000 hours of content, which the new service for Spanish-speaking audiences in Latin America will offer, according to the release. Programming tailored to Latin America includes television series and movies across genres including reality, anime, lifestyle, reality competitions, nature, true crime and kids’ content.

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New content partners have been added to ones previously announced. These include A2 Filmes, All3Media, Alliant, BBC Studios, Beverly Hills Entertainment, Big Media, Blue Ant Media, Caracol, Castalia, CDC International, Cineflix, Cisneros Media, Comarex, Combate Americas, DRG, Endemol Shine, FilmRise, FourK, Fremantle, Glory Sports, Gusto Distribution, Hard Knocks Fighting, Hearst, Indigenius, Impact Wrestling, Inverleigh, Kinpil, Latin Angels, Leda Films, Legendary Entertainment, Life Design, Lionsgate, Marvista, Motion Pictures, MPI Media, MTV, Nelvana, New Dominion, Nick Jr., Nickelodeon, Off The Fence, OTRO, Paramount, Polar Star, Pongalo, Sabbatical Entertainment, Samuel Goldwyn, Sofa Digital, Sonar Entertainment, Sony Pictures Television, Spanglish Movies, Syndicado, Telefe, Televix, The Asylum, TV Azteca, VIP 2000, Viz Media, Wildbrain and World Poker Tour.

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Pluto TV also added a “Quedate en casa #JuntosADistancia” in its On-Demand section for stay-at-home customers.

Pluto TV Adds Four New Channels

As Americans hunker down at home due to the coronavirus outbreak, AVOD service Pluto TV March 17 launched four new channels — TokuSHOUTsu (Ch. 681), Cops (Ch. 308), Blaze Live (Ch. 250) and America’s Voice News (Ch. 247).

TokuSHOUTsu (Ch. 681) offers tokusatsu entertainmant. Tokusatsu is the Japanese term for TV dramas and live-action films with special effects, monster brawls, superhero stunts and sci-fi. Content includes “Super Sentai,” “Ultraman” and “Kamen Rider.”

Cops (Ch. 308) gives viewers access into the daily lives and work of police officers, sheriff’s deputies and others in law enforcement. Filmed on location across the United States, the series follows real-life officers on patrol as they conduct high-speed pursuits, arrests and more.

America’s Voice News (Ch. 247) is a political news network.

Blaze Live (Ch. 250) is news and entertainment “for people who love America,” according to Pluto TV. Hosts include Mark Levin, Glenn Beck, Steven Crowder, Dave Rubin, Phil & Jase Robertson and Sara Gonzales.

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In addition to these four new channels, Pluto TV will be running programming blocks:

  • Sci-Fi Action on Pluto TV Movies 1 & 2, Channels 54 and 56, March 18, 7 p.m. (EST/PST),Stealth, Virtuosity, Aeon Flux;
  • Athletically Funny on Pluto TV Comedy, Channel 60, March 19, 7 p.m. (EST/PST), Kingpin, Bull Durham, Nacho Libre, Necessary Roughness, The Foot Fist Way;
  • Character Comedies on Pluto TV Comedy, Channel 60, March 25, 7 p.m. EST, The Dictator, The Love Guru, Superstar, Night at the Roxbury; and
  • Family Adventures on Pluto TV Movies 1 & 2, Channels 54 and 56, March 30, 7 p.m. (EST/PST), Lemony Snicket, The Tuxedo, Young Sherlock Holmes.

Shout! Factory March 17 Launches Streaming Channel TokuSHOUTsu on Pluto TV

Shout! Factory TV March 17 will launch a new linear streaming channel, TokuSHOUTsu, on AVOD service Pluto TV.

The 24/7 channel explores the world of tokusatsu — the Japanese entertainment genre known for its unique special effects and epic battles. Appearing on Channel 681 in the Tech + Geek section, TokuSHOUTsu presents tokusatsu content not available on any leading streaming service, curated especially for fans of the genre, according to Shout!.

Free to Pluto TV’s 22+ million monthly active users, the ad-supported TokuSHOUTsu will be home to the U.S. debut of the cult classic “Kamen Rider,” debuting with the inaugural 98-episode series from 1971. TokuSHOUTsu will also launch with “Ultraman Leo,” as well as “Super Sentai,” the series that ultimately led to the “Power Rangers” phenomenon.

Pluto TV is available on all leading digital streaming devices and services, including Roku, Amazon Fire, Apple TV and Google Chromecast, as well as major smart TVs and game consoles. For viewers looking to stream content on demand, “Kamen Rider,” “Ultraman Leo” and “Super Sentai” will also be available on Shout! Factory TV.

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“We’re so proud to launch TokuSHOUTsu as the ultimate destination for fans to watch the best tokusatsu content spanning more than 60 years,” said Gene Pao, Shout! Factory’s SVP, digital enterprises, in a statement. “We know fans have come to appreciate the carefully curated content that Shout! Factory distributes, and we’ve created this channel with the legions of tokusatsu enthusiasts in mind. We’re thrilled to add it to our umbrella of fan-centric streaming options.”

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“’Kamen Rider’ is the number one kids’ program in Japan, and is still beloved after all these years,” said Shin-ichiro Shirakura, producer of the series. “We are so excited that the show will finally be available for all of our fans in North America.”

TokuSHOUTsu also will feature original content, including “Let’s Talk Toku,” a new, original weekly talk show produced by and for tokusatsu fans and hosted by genre expert Squall Charlson.