If you are one of the many consumers who own a VIZIO Smartcast television set, then today there’s a free update waiting for you. Unlike many software updates, this one actually packs more than some bug fixes and security improvements. Today’s update brings a new streaming television service powered by Pluto TV called WatchFree. It packs 100 live and linear channels, and as the name implies, you can use the service free of charge.
One of the best parts of living in the 21st century has got to be free software updates. It can be seen as a blessing with new features being delivered to your devices without the need to pay a single red cent, but also can be perceived as a curse when users have to agree to terms and conditions followed by installation delays. No matter which side of the argument you find yourself on, today’s update from VIZIO is one that you should take a look at.
In a very competitive TV market in terms of both pricing and features, VIZIO is adding a streaming service to its televisions that embraces the idea of cutting the cord. At launch, WatchFree offers access to mainstream channels like NBC News/MSNBC, Fox Sports, and more, with the promise of Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares and Unsolved Mysteries that will make an appearance as two new pop-up channels in the near future. Everything appears to be easy-to-browse, thanks to a slick interface.
“With the TV landscape continuously evolving, we’re excited to offer consumers a comprehensive entertainment solution packed with free and unlimited content offerings.” said Bill Baxter, Chief Technology Officer, VIZIO. “Powered by Pluto TV, WatchFree is a next-generation streaming service with an easy-to-navigate, cable-like interface that delivers creative and thoughtful content selections.”
VIZIO makes using the service feel very similar to the traditional experience with a TV guide-like interface (although this one offers a more modern design in comparison to many) paired with the fact that it shows up as its own input just like a cable box would.
While anything that enables users to more easily cut the cord is a welcome update, VIZIO is not the first mainstream TV manufacturer to offer this type of service. LG has offered its Channel Plus service for many years with support going all the way back to some 2012 models. If you own a more recent LG television running webOS, you likely have the capability of using this service.
To take advantage of VIZIO’s new WatchFree service, simply check for software updates on your SmartCast-enabled TV and follow the on-screen instructions.