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Google TV’s Pluto Upgrade Makes Watching Free TV Even Easier

Google TV is adding Pluto TV to its Live tab, making it quicker and easier to see what’s now showing on the various free channels and tune in.

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It is now even easier to watch free TV on Google TV devices, thanks to a partnership with Pluto TV. Previously known as Android TV, Google TV is Google’s fresh take on a TV-optimized operating system and one that specifically looks to make it easier to see relevant recommendations and find content to watch. The Chromecast with Google TV already uses the new interface, while existing Android TV devices are slowly being updated.

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With so many streaming services now available, and most of them requiring a paid subscription for access, the cost of streaming can mount up quickly. This issue has led to the rise of various free services which offer access to either select live TV programming or on-demand content for free. Pluto TV is one of those services and one that continues to prove popular with consumers.

Google TV devices are now gaining integration with Pluto TV, making it easier and quicker to see which live TV channels are available to watch for free, what’s on, and tune in. Google TV devices come with a ‘Live TV’ tab which displays a TV guide for apps downloaded on the device. These apps do need to support the Live tab integration for the TV guide to be visible and that’s exactly what’s now happening with Pluto TV.

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Providing the device owner has the Pluto TV app downloaded on their Google TV-powered device then they will soon start to see Pluto TV listings appearing in the Live tab and can quickly tune in to any of the channels with a click of the remote. The same integration is already available to Philo and Sling TV subscribers. However, as both of these live TV services typically require a paid subscription, the Pluto TV integration will be a better option for those looking to avoid paying for a live TV subscription. According to the announcement, the Pluto TV integration is starting to roll out today, with the expectation that the feature will be available on all Google TV devices over the coming weeks.

As to be expected with a free service, the selection of channels available through Pluto TV is not going to be the same as what’s typically on offer with a paid live TV service. In this sense, Pluto TV won’t act as a direct replacement for many individuals and households as the channels are typically curated by the service. For example, various movie channels, or channels specifically dedicated to a genre or show type. Arguably, as it is not a replacement for a traditional live TV streaming service, it is likely to equally appeal to those already paying for a live TV subscription as those looking to avoid the cost altogether.

By John Finn

John started Streaming Clarity to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been writing about technology and TV-related services and devices since 2014 and believes the best streaming approach is to bounce between services as needed. Contact John via email at john@streamingclarity.com or on Twitter

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