Plex adds 80 free, ad-supported streaming channels in grid guide

The cord cutter platform is taking on the Roku Channel and Pluto TV with no-cost news, sports and lifestyle content.

Ty Pendlebury Editor
Ty Pendlebury is a journalism graduate of RMIT Melbourne, and has worked at CNET since 2006. He lives in New York City where he writes about streaming and home audio.
Expertise Ty has worked for radio, print, and online publications, and has been writing about home entertainment since 2004. He majored in Cinema Studies when studying at RMIT. He is an avid record collector and streaming music enthusiast. Credentials
  • Ty was nominated for Best New Journalist at the Australian IT Journalism awards, but he has only ever won one thing. As a youth, he was awarded a free session for the photography studio at a local supermarket.
Ty Pendlebury
2 min read

Streaming app Plex is adding over 80 channels of free television programming. The ad-supported channels come with a new program grid and include news from Reuters and Yahoo Finance, kids' shows Toon Goggles, lifestyle channel Tastemade, sports courtesy of the Fubo Sports Network, gaming and esports on IGN1and two new LGBTQ+ channels from Revry.

As with the free on-demand shows and movies Plex added earlier this year, you don't need a dedicated server or even a Plex login to watch. Instead you can use the app for Roku , Apple TV , Android and iOS  as well as browsers. The app supports live TV tuners and music service Tidal, as well as streaming content from an attached hard drive or host computer via the Plex server.

Streaming providers have added more free TV content recently. The Roku Channel also added live TV channels to its offering with many of the same channels. NBCUniversal's new Peacock streaming service also has a free tier and a selection of grid-based channels. Meanwhile Pluto TV beefed up its selection of free shows with numerous ViacomCBS titles including South Park and Survivor.

Read more: Best free TV streaming services: Peacock, Plex, Pluto TV, Roku, IMDb TV, Crackle and more 

Don't confuse the free "channels" on these services with standard network TV channels available on services such as Sling TV and YouTube TV, however. The free channels are generally much less familiar and more limited. But if you're looking to save money on streaming amid financial turmoil, more choices in free TV can't hurt.