Free Streaming, Endless Opportunities: Exploring the Importance of FAST Channels

Rishabh Jain Oct 18th, 2023

It seems like today, everyone has a subscription to OTT platforms to access sports, entertainment, and news content. According to Kantar, the number of American households have at least one video subscription, which has increased by 85%. And, the average home has 4.7 different streaming services. But still, there are free options available today that as Fast Channel. Most of us are using Fast Channel, but probably they may not be familiar with this term. If you’re using Pluto TV, Peacock, The Roku Channel, IMDb TV, and Samsung TV+, then you’re part of Fast Channels revolutionize. But what exactly Fast Channels is? In this blog, we’ll discuss everything about Fast Channel. So, let’s get started.

What is Fast Channel?

Fast Channel stands for free ad-supported streaming TV. Advertising support allows content distributors to offer their content for free. No additional subscription or service bundle is required to enjoy FAST channels. Like other streaming services, FAST channels are broadcast directly to the consumer. All they need is an Internet connection, and they’re ready to go. They also provide free content along with large libraries of works, carry lower ad-loads than pay TV’s average of 12 minutes and 12 seconds per hour, and offer a good user experience.  Example of fast channels, Tubi, Pluto TV, XUMO, Vudu, IMDb TV, Peacock (free tier), The Roku Channel and etc. 

Types of FAST Channel Streaming Services

There are two types of Fast Streaming Channels, such as _ Platform Agnostic & Platform Exclusive.  Fast Channels can be accessible over various operating systems, including: – Pluto TV, Roku, Peacock, and Xumo, while platform exclusive is only accessible one operating platform, such as- LG, Samsung TV+, and VIZIO watch free. FAST services are always free. Using advertisements as their primary source of revenue. AVOD services, on the other hand, can be free or charge some fee.

What Is the Difference Between FAST and AVOD?

                              FAST                                   AVOD
  • It stands for free ad-supported streaming TV.
  • It stands for Advertising-based Video on Demand.
  • FAST platforms host channels that deliver scheduled programming to a large group audience through the connected device.
  • AVOD platforms initiate individual viewing sessions that produce inventory to serve the audience with personalized ads.
  • FAST is unique because it includes a linear television experience.
  • AVOD is an on-demand service that lets you pick and choose what content you want to watch.
  • Netflix, for instance, now offers an ad-supported subscription plan at a lower rate than their established subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) plan.
  • The same applies to AVOD plans or tiers offered by popular streaming TV services such as Disney+ and HBO Max.
  • Example, Pluto TV, Roku, Peacock, and Xumo.
  • Example, – LG, Samsung TV+, and VIZIO watch free.

How does FAST channels work?

FAST channels are quite similar to watching traditional, linear television. You can watch a program that airs on a particular channel at a certain time. They are designed for connected TV devices, such as_ video game consoles, Roku TV, Apple TV, and Amazon Fire. Additionally, they are compatible with OTT platforms, deliver media content directly through the internet. As like to your linear TV channels, FAST channels are selected via an electronic programming grid or TV guide, which displays available titles and channels.

Simply put, Fast Channel is built around licensing older TV shows and movies, but the growing market may indicate a desire for more original content. Roku, Tubi and Freevi have already started native work. The move could make for a smoother transition for outlets owned by larger companies like Peacock (NBCUniversal) and Pluto TV (Paramount).

Why is FAST Channel Streaming Important?

This model offers many opportunities for content providers and platforms but also challenges. Platforms are once again having to plan programming instead of offering consumers on-demand selections. It also assumes that consumers will continue to have an appetite for any type of programmed content. It’s important to remember that on-demand options have grown for a reason. As per the industry conversations and developments, the streaming platforms will take the path of Curiosity Stream, abandoning the subscription model.I In favor of FAST on as many platforms as possible, thereby increasing revenues on existing content libraries. If, on average, you’re paying $50 to $75 to acquire a subscriber and they leave in six to nine months, the unit economics of a $5 to $10 subscription don’t make sense.


As streaming options and models have advanced, consumers’ viewing habits have evolved. With the rise of FAST, consumers are getting free content (through ad display), content providers are getting new revenue channels and platforms are getting more content to engage users. When considering the options and content that now exist in the streaming world – such as subscriptions that provide original content and blockbuster movies, live news or sports and fast channels on demand – the landscape has undoubtedly changed and will continue to do so. The rise of new options like FAST channels aims to provide consumers with exactly what they want.

Rishabh Jain - Director, Product Development, Enveu
Rishabh Jain is one of the co-founders and heads the Product Development at Enveu. A tech evangelist and deep tech advocate, he has been working in the Technology space, being part of many Big Data and IoT initiatives for over 10 years.

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