Roku Adds Kids & Family To Streaming Service

Despite rapidly declining traditional TV kids viewing, Roku has followed CBS All Access in offering kids programming.

Roku’s “Kids & Family,” on streaming service The Roku Channel, is free and advertising-supported area on its platform.

Lego Systems has signed on as the first advertising sponsor. The commercial load on Roku’s new kids/family area will be lighter than on traditional TV -- with only 40% of the advertising time.

Roku says the company made the move because it is a “challenge” to find good kids and family entertainment.

The Roku Channel will have kids and family content from Viacom’s Noggin, Hopster and Zoomoo, as well as HBO and Starz. Shows will include “Bubble Guppies,” “Dora the Explorer,” “PAW Patrol” and “Peppa Pig.”

A week ago, CBS All Access said it was adding kids programming to its internet-streaming service — original series and more than 1,000 episodes of library programming. CBS All Access basic ad-supported OTT service costs $5.99 a month.

All this is occurring as traditional kids programming continues to sharply decline — even faster than adult programming.

Bernstein Research says for the most recent August week, kids' shows on cable networks were down 24%, looking at Nielsen live-program-plus-same-time viewing. Bernstein says in the last 46 or 53 weeks, kids' cable networks have seen more than 20% declines.

This comes as total traditional TV viewing continues to sink every week, from 12% to 18%.

Disney+ announced it will have kids' programming content when it launches in November.

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