Plex will now be offering free live local TV for its Plex Pass subscribers.
For now, the feature will work with iOS devices and the Android TV platform. Plex will add support for Android and Apple TV soon and promises more device support is in the works.
Plex’s live TV service will work the platform’s DVR and it will be available at no extra cost. But users will need to buy an antenna and a digital tuner. Plex is promising to add more antenna and tuner support in the near future, but for now, according to the company’s support page, Mohu and HD Frequency antennas performed best during the company’s tests of the service.
Digital tuners supported include ATSC (North America), WinTV-dualHD, WinTV-HVR-955Q, WinTV-quadHD, Digital TV for Xbox One, AVerMedia AVerTV Volar Hybrid Q, SiliconDust HDHR (all models), DVB-C/T/T2 TVButler 100TC, WinTV-soloHD and Freeview HD TV for Xbox One.
In addition to live TV and DVR, the Plex Pass subscription includes Plex Cloud, offline playback, enhanced music features and automatic photo-tagging. The service is priced is $4.99 a month, $39.99 a year or $119.99 for a lifetime pass.
In a demo, Plex CEO Keith Valory and CPO and co-founder Scott Olechowski showed the updated user experience, which integrates live local TV pulled in by the antenna with other digital channels in the guide. Valory said that Plex went through a lengthy building and testing process to make live TV viable on Plex’s platform.
“We had to create a lot of new UX to make it work,” Valory said.
In addition to the live TV announcement, Plex also announced in-app DVR management that will allow users to browse the program guide and manage recordings directly from the Android TV and iOS apps. The company said more device support for that feature will be added soon.
“Plex has always been about serving up the best possible media experience in one beautiful interface, no matter where you are and what device you’re using. We want to put all of your favorite content right at your fingertips whenever you’re ready to enjoy it,” said Valory in a statement. “Now our Plex Pass users can enjoy free live and recorded TV with local news and sports at no extra cost, and without having to purchase yet another service.”