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Pluto TV is an Internet-based TV platform owned by Viacom.[1][2] The company was founded in 2013 and is based in Los Angeles, California.[3] Pluto TV runs as an app on 14 platforms,[4] including Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Roku, and PlayStation consoles.[5] The company currently has more than 75 content partners, over 100 free channels, and reaches over 12 million monthly active users.[6] Pluto TV generates revenue from video advertisements between programming, with plans to remain a free television provider.[7] Pluto TV licenses its content directly from providers.[8]

HistoryEdit

In 2014, Pluto TV raised $13 million in Series A funding.[7]

In July 2015, Pluto TV signed a deal with Hulu to distribute Hulu's free video content.[9] In October 2015, they added 20 additional channels, bringing the total number of additional channels to above 100.[10] On May 15, 2016, Pluto TV signed a deal with Sony to launch the Pluto TV app on the PlayStation Store for the Sony PlayStation 3 and Sony PlayStation 4.

In 2016, the company raised $30 million in Series B venture capital funding, valuing the company at $140 million. The round was led by German TV station ProSieben, with additional funding from telecommunications company Sky UK.[7] Pluto Inc. added a chief programming officer role in April, 2017.[11]

In 2017, Pluto TV added a large library of on-demand movies and television shows.[12] Variety reported that as of May 2017, the service was averaging 6 million users per month,[13] and was rated one of the most-watched apps on Roku, as of October 2017.[14] A channel dedicated to movies from The Asylum was added in June 2017.[15]

As of February 2018, Pluto had over 100 channels. Most of the channels are only available online, packaging content Pluto has acquired through various syndication deals; channels whose traditionally televised feeds are carried directly on Pluto include NASA TV, WeatherNation TV, Buzzr, Newsmax TV, Bloomberg Television, RT and Stadium.[16]

In August 2018, Vizio announced a new streaming experience called WatchFree, built into several models of its lineup of Internet-connected smart TVs. This service is powered by Pluto TV, and Vizio advertised "an easy-to-navigate, cable-like interface" in the announcement.[17]

In October 2018, Pluto TV launched in the United Kingdom on Sky's Now TV service.[18] On December 4, 2018, Pluto TV launched in Germany and Austria, also through Sky.[19]

In January 2019, Viacom announced its intention to acquire Pluto for $340 million.[20] The deal was completed on March 4, 2019.[21]

Viacom's plans for Pluto TV include more licensed content from Viacom's Paramount Pictures studio, expansion into Latin America, availability on smart TV's,[22] and paid subscriptions.[23]

On March 18, 2019, Viacom expected to launch Pluto TV worldwide.[24]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Hey Cord-Cutters: Pluto.TV Launches With 85 Channels Of Free, TV-Style Internet Video". Forbes. March 31, 2014. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  2. ^ Pluto Inc. "Pluto TV - Android Apps on Google Play". google.com. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  3. ^ "Pluto, Inc.: Private Company Information - Businessweek". bloomberg.com. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  4. ^ "Partner - Pluto.tv". Pluto.tv. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  5. ^ "About Us". Pluto TV. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
  6. ^ "Free streaming TV service Pluto TV raises $8.3M, in new round led by Samsung – TechCrunch". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  7. ^ a b c Perez, Sarah. "Pluto TV, a free streaming service for cord cutters, raises $30 million more". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2017-04-30.
  8. ^ "Pluto aims to bring TV to the Internet". Yahoo Finance. 17 February 2016. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  9. ^ "Hulu inks distribution deal with Pluto TV". CED. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  10. ^ "Pluto TV Adds 20 New Channels Including IGN, The Onion, AwesomenessTV, Newsy, And The Young Turks". Android Police. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  11. ^ Spangler, Todd (2017-04-04). "Pluto TV Taps Former E! Exec Robert Magdlen as Chief Programming Officer". Variety. Retrieved 2017-04-30.
  12. ^ "Streaming TV service Pluto TV adds an on-demand video library – TechCrunch". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  13. ^ Spangler, Todd (2017-05-16). "Pluto TV, Angling to Become the Spotify of Premium Video, Launches Free On-Demand Service (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  14. ^ Roku. "Roku". Roku. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  15. ^ "The Asylum Opens on Pluto TV - Dread Central". www.dreadcentral.com. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  16. ^ "The Cord Cutters Guide to Pluto TV (A FREE Streaming Service) - Cord Cutters News". Cord Cutters News. 2018-02-24. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  17. ^ Roettgers, Janko; Roettgers, Janko (2018-08-01). "Vizio Integrates Pluto TV With New Ad-Supported WatchFree Service". Variety. Retrieved 2019-01-23.
  18. ^ "Pluto TV makes European debut on Now TV in the UK". Digital TV Europe. October 2, 2018.
  19. ^ "Pluto TV launches in Germany and Austria". Broadband TV News. December 3, 2018.
  20. ^ "Viacom Acquires Free Streaming Platform Pluto TV for $340 Million". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2019-01-23.
  21. ^ "Viacom Announces Completion of Pluto TV Acquisition". www.businesswire.com. 2019-03-04. Retrieved 2019-03-04.
  22. ^ "Viacom eyes distributor partnerships for Pluto TV | FierceVideo". www.fiercevideo.com.
  23. ^ "Pluto TV will expand its free service with paid subscriptions, says new owner Viacom".
  24. ^ https://deadline.com/2019/03/viacom-pluto-tv-avod-1202577324

Official websitesEdit