YouTube’s “Movies & Shows” page added a “Free to Watch” section last month. They’re trying to compete with free ad-supported online movie offerings from Roku, Walmart, and Tubi.
YouTube quietly added around 100 ad-supported Hollywood movies to its site. The titles include a mix of classics like “Rocky” and “The Terminator,” as well as other family fare like “Zookeeper,” “Agent Cody Banks,” and “Legally Blonde,” among others. TechCrunch reported:
Before, YouTube had only offered consumers the ability to purchase movies and TV shows, similar to how you can rent or buy content from Apple’s iTunes or Amazon Video.
Currently, YouTube is serving ads on these free movies, but the report said the company is open to working out other deals with advertisers – like sponsorships or exclusive screenings.
YouTube’s advantage in this space, compared with some others, is its sizable user base of 1.9 billion monthly active users and its ability to target ads using data from Google.