Plex May Start Streaming Free Movies

If you're in the market for a streaming service that doesn't come from Netflix, Hulu, Amazon or any other major company, there might be a new player coming soon.

Credit: Screenshot by Tom's Guide

(Image credit: Screenshot by Tom's Guide)

Plex, which has earned its accolades by delivering some of the more popular media management services in the industry, is now looking to get into premium content streaming, TechCrunch reported after interviewing Plex executives, including CEO Keith Valory. Those executives say Plex is currently in talks with content providers to see how it could provide free, ad-supported movies to the platform.

Plex offers a central repository for storing all of your multimedia content in one place. Best of all, the content is readily accessible on a slew of platforms, thanks to Plex bringing its app to just about every major device in the wild. 

Moving into premium content would be a new phase for Plex, but not necessarily unprecedented. The company has already signed a deal with streaming audio company Tidal to sell bundled subscriptions to both Tidal and Plex's own Plex Pass subscription. The idea is to provide another option for streaming content through the service. And for Tidal, it's a way to capitalize on Plex's growing user base.

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Indeed, the sales pitch to content providers in the movie and television industries might be similar. It would be difficult for Plex to get access to the top Hollywood films using an ad-based system, but it could get access to plenty of solid content. For Hollywood, it's another place to make a few bucks on content that might not otherwise generate much revenue.

But aside from ad-based content, Plex is also talking with rights providers about the possibility of offering their content and subscriptions through Plex, similar to what it's done with Tidal. The company envisions a way for Plex users to access streaming services from a host of providers and create their own bundles of content. Plex would be the platform through which people subscribe and stream the content, according to TechCrunch's sources.

Looking ahead, it's unclear exactly when Plex might be able to start offering those video services. However, the company hopes to get at least some options in front of users in 2019.