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LG Channels to distribute Pluto TV streams in other countries

A LG OLED television set.
A LG OLED television set. (Image courtesy LG, Graphic by The Desk)

Paramount Global’s free, ad-supported streaming television service Pluto TV will make over 100 channels of content available on LG’s smart TVs in dozens of countries.

The deal was announced Wednesday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas by Tom Ryan, the president of streaming at Paramount Global, and LG Electronics’ CEO William Cho.

Currently, more than 100 Pluto TV streams are offered natively through the LG Channels app for TV viewers in the United States. But while Pluto TV has expanded its free service to other countries, users of LG’s webOS TVs have had to purchase a separate streaming device like an Amazon Fire TV stick or use a supported cable or satellite set-top box to get them.

Pluto TV has a history of offering its content streams to third parties for their own free streaming platforms. In the United States, dozens of Pluto TV feeds are available on Samsung TV Plus, Vizio WatchFree Plus and on the free version of Sling TV.

The strategy to distribute Pluto TV’s streams within its own app and on third party platforms has helped the Paramount-owned service gain market share among streaming television products. Last November, Nielsen listed Pluto TV by name on its monthly market share tracker called The Gauge. According to Nielsen, Pluto TV had a 1 percent share of the domestic streaming marketplace. Paramount’s flagship service, Paramount Plus, was not named on the list.

“Pluto TV is the first [free, ad-supported streaming] service to cross the 1 percent share threshold and break out of the ‘other streaming category,'” a Nielsen official said at the time.

The domestic version of Pluto TV offers the most linear streams of content, with over 250 channels offered on the service. It also has a robust on-demand library with thousands of movies and TV episodes. As of November 2022, the service had around 72 million monthly active users.

Pluto TV is also available in nearly three dozen countries around the world, including Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Latin America. The service is expected to come to Australia later this year.