The Desk appreciates the support of readers who purchase products or services through links on our website. Learn more...

Pluto TV quietly drops commercial-free Dash Radio stations

The commercial-free radio streams powered by Dash Radio weren't popular with users, a source said.

The commercial-free radio streams powered by Dash Radio weren't popular with users, a source said.

(Image: ViacomCBS/Handout)

Free streaming service Pluto TV has removed more than two dozen commercial-free radio streams powered by Dash Radio.

The removal of the stations were first spotted by The Desk on Monday, with Dash Radio stations unavailable and URLs for the the streams redirecting to Pluto TV’s aggregate news channel.

Dash Radio operates more than 80 commercial-free stations from a variety of genres including rock, pop, country, Christian and talk radio. Around 30 of these stations were curated into ViacomCBS-owned Pluto TV several years ago to replicate the presence of Much Music and SiriusXM on traditional cable and satellite services.

On Wednesday, a spokesperson for Pluto TV said a technical difficulty with the Dash Radio streams last weekend led to a prolonged outage. Rather than fixing the issue, the service decided to let them unofficially sunset.

The spokesperson said the company is formulating a new strategy around music offerings on Pluto TV, with new music products expected to be available later this year.

A source who spoke with The Desk on background confirmed the company was in the process of moving away from the streams. The source said the Dash Radio streams were not popular with users.

Pluto TV still offers six music video channels, including several MTV-themed channels and a stream powered by the music video platform Vevo.

Dash Radio stations are still available to stream via the service’s dedicated apps on iOS, Android, Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV. Streams are also available on Sonos and Google and Amazon’s line of smart speakers.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story attributed information to a source who said on background that Pluto TV’s agreement with Dash Radio expired earlier this month. A spokesperson for Pluto TV said the audio channels were actually removed from the service due to a technical glitch.

Photo of author

About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is an award-winning journalist with more than 10 years of experience covering the business of television and radio broadcasting, streaming services and the overall media industry. In addition to his work as publisher of The Desk, Matthew contributes regularly to StreamTV Insider and KnowTechie, and has worked for several well-known news organizations, including Thomson Reuters, McNaughton Newspapers, Grasswire, Comstock's magazine, KTXL-TV and KGO-TV. Matthew is a member of IRE, a trade organization for investigative reporters and editors, and is based in Northern California.

Email: [email protected] | Signal: 530-507-8380