The Roku Channel Adds Free Access to Local ABC News Affiliates

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Did you recently cut the cord and ditch your cable subscription? Finding a quality, cost-effective way to watch local channels is one of the top issues many cord cutters encounter.

The Roku Channel, which is one of the top free streaming TV options on the market, just added a new option for local news.

Roku recently announced the addition of free new channels produced by local ABC affiliates. The service previously announced that it would carry similar options from local NBC affiliates.

This may not be a complete replacement of your favorite TV shows from network television, but it is progress for those hoping to gain access to local news without buying an antenna or paying a subscription fee.

The Roku Channel Adds Local ABC News Channels in Major Markets

Effective June 6, 2023, The Roku Channel users can find nine new — and free — ABC local news channels to stream.

These are not full versions of the live broadcast from these local channels. Instead, they’re curated streams that include highlights of that station’s news broadcast, weather updates, local interviews and more original content.

The following ABC livestream channels are now available, according to the press release:

  • ABC 7 New York: New York’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering NYC, New Jersey, Long Island and all of the greater New York City area.
  • ABC 7 Los Angeles: Los Angeles breaking news and live streaming video. Covering LA, Orange County and Southern California.
  • ABC 7 Chicago: Chicago breaking news, weather and live video. Covering local politics, health, traffic and sports for Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana.
  • ABC 6 Philadelphia: Action News is Philadelphia’s source for breaking news, weather and video, covering Philadelphia, Pa., NJ, and Delaware.
  • ABC 13 Houston: ABC13 is your source for breaking news and weather from Houston, Harris County and Texas. Watch live streaming video, and stay updated on Houston news.
  • ABC 7 San Francisco: The Bay Area’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose and all of the greater Bay Area.
  • ABC 11 Raleigh-Durham: Raleigh-Durham’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering Raleigh, Durham, Fayetteville and NC.
  • ABC 30 Fresno: Fresno’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering the North Valley, South Valley, Sierra and the greater Fresno area.
  • ABC Localish: A national network built around extraordinary people, places, and passions across America.

You can find these channels via the “News” tab on The Roku Channel app. The channels also are prominently featured in the “Newly Added Channels” tab since they are fresh arrivals on the app.

The Roku Channel ABC local news
Illustration via Roku

More New Channels Announced Alongside ABC Locals

In addition to the new local news channels, Roku also announced The Roku Channel will feature eight more new livestream channels.

These FAST (free, ad-supported TV) channels include content focused on popular topics like “Transformers” and “Power Rangers.”


Here’s the full list of new additions:

  • Azteca Internacional
  • Celebrity Name Game
  • Corazón
  • Drag Race Universe
  • HerSphere by Lionsgate
  • MotorTrend FAST TV
  • Power Rangers
  • Transformers

In total, The Roku Channel now features more than 350 FAST channels that hit on topics that include news, sports, weather and a variety of entertainment genres.

The quality of the content on these channels varies, but the expanded options are an attempt to reach a broader range of streamers by targeting specific topics of interest.

This all comes in addition to the on-demand menu of TV shows and movies on the platform.

If used in combination with other free streaming options like Pluto TV, Amazon’s Freevee and Tubi TV, cord cutters may find that free streaming TV could be an adequate cable TV and live TV streaming replacement.

Making the switch to free streaming could save a YouTube TV subscriber up to $876 per year, for example.

Will this addition from The Roku Channel help you get local news in your market? Are you a cord cutter who has a method for getting local news? We’d love to hear about it in the community.

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