Roku shares hike in deal that restores YouTube TV app

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Roku’s shares more than doubled in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic has kept people at home and led to increased use of streaming.


Photo:

Brendan Mcdermid / Reuters

Actions in Roku Inc.

ROKU 18.23%

jumped up to 20% on Wednesday after the streaming device maker signed a multi-year deal with Alphabet Inc.

GOOG 0.46%

which restores the YouTube TV app to its service.

Roku had removed the YouTube TV app from his channel in April amid a dispute over how search results were displayed on Roku’s platform. The YouTube TV app allows its subscribers to watch dozens of live TV channels online for a monthly subscription; the most popular free YouTube app remained available on Roku.

The deal extends the agreement between the two companies and will make YouTube and YouTube TV available to all Roku streamers. Specific terms were not disclosed.

“This agreement represents a positive development for our mutual customers,” said a spokesperson for Roku.

A representative from YouTube was not available for comment. He emailed users on Wednesday to say his TV app was back in the Roku Channel Store.

Roku shares closed up 18.2% at $ 256.08 after earlier hitting a high of $ 260.99.

The stock rose by around 148% in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic kept more people at home and led to increased use of streaming.

Shares have fallen 35% this year, through Tuesday, amid a slowdown in the addition of new accounts. In November, Roku officials blamed the slowdown on supply chain delays that disrupted the U.S. television market.

The feud between Roku and YouTube TV echoed distribution disputes between cable companies and their channels, and showed Roku’s role in the age of streaming.

Roku is considered the largest manufacturer of streaming devices in the United States

Roku sells smart TVs with built-in streaming technology, as well as devices that users can plug into TVs. The company generates most of its revenue by selling ads on streaming channels and taking a share of subscription revenue and ad inventory from streaming services.

The streaming wars could mean you have a lot more options when it comes to platforms and content for entertainment. But in the end, paying for all of these options will be a lot like the hefty prices you used to pay for your old-fashioned cable plan. Photo: Alexandra Cardinale

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Appeared in the print edition of Dec. 9, 2021 under the headline “Roku Deal Restores YouTube TV App, Fuels Soaring Shares”.


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