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: YouTube is testing free, ad-supported streaming channels, report says

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YouTube is testing a new hub of free, ad-supported streaming channels, putting it on a competitive collision course with Roku Inc., Paramount Global’s Pluto TV and Fox Corp.’s Tubi.

Alphabet Inc.’s
GOOGL,
+0.33%

GOOG,
+0.27%

video platform is in discussions with entertainment companies about featuring their movies and shows on the channels and is testing the concept with select media partners, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

“We’re always looking for new ways to provide viewers a central destination to more easily find, watch and share the content that matters most to them,” a YouTube spokesperson said.

The move by YouTube is likely to mean even more competition for Roku
ROKU,
+2.20%
,
Paramount Global’s
PARA,
-1.95%

Pluto TV, Fox’s
FOXA,
-0.31%

Tubi — even Netflix Inc.
NFLX,
+0.96%
,
which recently launched a lower-cost, ad-supported option to subscribers.

YouTube hauled in $7.1 billion in advertising revenue in its fiscal third quarter, 13% of Google’s total ad sales, but it was the first decline since Alphabet started reporting the video unit’s financial performance in 2020.

YouTube has recently undertaken several streaming gambits, including paying $2 billion a year for rights to the National Football League’s Sunday Ticket franchise, as well as creating a marketplace that lets users sign up for paid streaming services.

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