Vizio is partnering with Pluto TV to add a free video streaming service, called WatchFree, to “nearly all” of the company’s SmartCast televisions. WatchFree will get its own dedicated input, so it’ll have nearly the same prominence as your HDMI inputs and the main SmartCast screen. WatchFree is rolling out starting today. When you switch over to it, you can browse between “more than 100 live and linear channels” covering TV shows, movies, news, sports, concerts, and “viral videos,” according to Vizio. (Did you see that one of the dog running around with the GoPro? Real good.) “WatchFree offers an unrivaled, free viewing experience with endless entertainment options at the forefront,” the company said in its press release. But “endless” doesn’t necessarily translate to great. Take those expectations down a notch. Some of the channels advertised as part of WatchFree include: Pluto TV Movies Action Movies Black Cinema News 24/7 NBC News/MSNBC Fox Sports Frontdoor Cats 24/7 Crime Network MST3K The Surf Channel Those NBC and Fox channels aren’t the actual cable networks, mind you; they’re different versions created for OTT services. “Coming soon” to WatchFree are two channels dedicated entirely to Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares and Unsolved Mysteries, the creepy ‘90s series hosted by Robert Stack. Apparently there was also a rebooted version hosted by Dennis Farina, but I don’t acknowledge that and neither should you. One thing of note is that you can’t pause or rewind WatchFree; it’s live/linear, and that’s all. While it’s to be expected for… [Read full story]
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