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Roku's channel selection may explode soon

A new tool now allows publishers to create channels in a few steps, bypassing application development.


Roku's streaming media boxes may soon be crammed with more to watch.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Roku will open up its channel creation process to all content publishers with a feature called Roku Direct Publisher, the company said Wednesday.

The change will allow developers to distribute their content without creating dedicated streaming applications, a process that involves time and resources. Bill Shapiro, director of product management for Roku OS, says he hopes this change will lead to more interesting and diverse offerings for consumers.

While Roku's attention is on user experience, it also seems focused on developers' ability to make money. Roku is offering publishers new "video ad monetization features, including the option to have Roku handle all video ad sales."

Some developers have already taken advantage of the tool, including Cracked, Mashable and Rolling Stone. How this change will affect the search options for Roku's streaming platform remains to be seen.