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Roku will replace traditional TV ads with targeted ads

Before too long, it will be nearly impossible to escape targeted ads. At that point, Roku is launching a linear ads beta program this week that will allow advertisers to deliver targeted ads in real time. Dynamic linear advertisements have become increasingly common as Internet television grows in popularity. It was only a matter of time before Roku stepped in.

Advertising week reports that AMC Networks, Crown Media, Paramount and Discovery have already signed. In the coming months, all publishers will be able to join.

Roku brings more targeted ads to your TV

Last March, Roku acquired Nielsen’s advanced video advertising business. This acquisition included both Nielsen’s Automatic Content Recognition (ACR) and Dynamic Ad Insertion (DAI) technologies. Roku said the end goal is to launch an end-to-end DAI solution with TV programmers and further integrate Nielsen products into the Roku platform.

Roku said it wants to let programmers “replace traditional TV ads with real-time, targeted ads.” This would allow marketers to improve their return on investment.

Here’s what Louqman Parampath, Vice President of Product Management and Advertising at Roku, said Advertising week Regarding this week’s beta program:

They effectively have access to a suite of addressable products, which gives them more control over their linear advertising inventory, ultimately delivering a better and more relevant advertising experience to the consumer. From an advertiser’s perspective, the ability to advertise targeted to linear TV commercials is something not typically possible on linear TV today. It’s a way for them to seek higher advertising ROI for their media budgets.

Parampath explained that this will benefit both advertisers and consumers. Not only will advertisers be able to target specific consumers, but those same consumers will “get more relevant, targeted, and timely ads.” This is how media companies can afford to offer free, ad-supported TV services like The Roku Channel.

Roku’s Busy Week

It’s just one of the few bombshells Roku has dropped this week. Monday, Roku reached a multi-year extension for its distribution agreement with Amazon. Therefore, Roku users will still be able to access the Prime Video and IMDb TV apps in the future.

And then on Tuesday, the company added 16 new linear channels to The Roku Channel. Here’s a full list, in case you missed the announcement:

  • AsianCrush
  • Taken in Providence
  • Cinevault Classics
  • Transaction area
  • MovieRise Anime, Movie Rise Black TV, FilmRise UK Television
  • Homeful
  • Cartoon Channel!
  • TV-LIV
  • China on demand
  • Carry out
  • strawberry shortcake
  • The Dick Van Dyke Show
  • Couple

As with all other live channels on The Roku Channel, these add-ons are free. Roku says its ad-supported free TV service now has more than 275 live channels. You can access the Roku Channel from any supported Roku device or from your browser at Also, if you own a Roku, be on the lookout for Roku OS 11.

More Roku coverage: For even more information on Roku, visit our Roku guide.