Rupert Murdoch to launch Netflix rival streaming platform Tubi
(Credits: Best of Netflix / YouTube Still)

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Rupert Murdoch to launch Netflix rival streaming platform Tubi

There are arguably too many streaming services these days, with subscribers having to be increasingly selective over which ones are worthy of their monthly subscription fee, but Rupert Murdoch has nonetheless decided that one more can’t hurt.

As if Netflix, Disney+, AppleTV+, Paramount+, Max, Prime Video, Freevee, Hulu, Peacock, Lionsgate+, RakutenTV, and Viaplay weren’t enough, the media tycoon has thrown his weight behind the United Kingdom expansion of rapidly-growing platform Tubi.

The ad-supported service already has an estimated 80 million subscribers in the United States with a content library that exceeds 20,000 movies and TV shows, but what the company has been lacking so far is an international footprint that’s even remotely comparable to its nearest competitors.

However, that’s all set to change now that Tubi set to roll out across Europe, with the fastest-growing streamer in America hoping to experience a similar surge in popularity outside of home shores. Murdoch’s Fox Corporation purchased the outfit outright for $440million in 2020 after he’d opted to sell off his stake in Roku, with revenue crossing $700million annually.

As chief executive, Anjali Sud explained in a statement, aggressive expansion was always part of the plan. “Tubi has spent the last decade honing our approach to vast, free, and fun streaming in North America, and we fell that now is the perfect time to bring that recipe to UK audiences.”

One obvious upside of Tubi making inroads into the UK market is that it’s completely free, with revenue being generated by the advertisements that play during content. In an era where belts are being tightened with increasing regularity and the number of streaming services is beginning to reach saturation point, it’s easy to see why Murdoch is confident the latest entrant onto the on-demand battlefield will be able to cultivate a decent-sized audience.

Sitting through ads will be a small price to pay for many, considering Tubi provides instant and cost-free access to tens of thousands of original and legacy titles alike, especially when it offers an eclectic and diverse array of content that spans from Hollywood blockbusters and established classics to cult favourites, arthouse fare, independent cinema, Bollywood, and much more.

The streaming bubble has felt as if bursting point is coming sooner rather than later, though, but one of the easiest ways to guarantee interest is to place Tubi’s status as a free service at the forefront of the marketing push.