With little fanfare, YouTube started streaming popular ad-supported movies for free. Last month, movies like Legally Blonde and pics from the Rocky franchise (Rocky I-V to be specific) popped up on the streaming service.
This is a new move for YouTube as they used to only offer movies and TV shows for purchase or rental. It also comes after Roku introduced its own free, ad-supported movie selection called The Roku Channel which is available on the web. Walmart’s streaming service Vudu, as well as Tubi, offer their own selection of free films.
YouTube hasn’t disclosed the deals it has made with studios and according to AdAge, Rohit Dhawan, director of product management at YouTube said that there will eventually be a way for advertisers to pay to sponsor individual movies, giving users complimentary views and exclusive screenings.
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For the time being, there are only about 100 movies available on this new ad-supported venture on YouTube. The list includes The Terminator, Zookeeper and Agent Cody Banks, but it is expected to expand.
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