Streamers Find New Life in the ‘FAST’ Lane: Free Ad-Supported Streaming TV Is Growing, Well, Fast | Video

WrapPRO Roundtable: Streaming with advertisements represents ”the most exciting and certainly the fastest growth I’ve seen out of a vertical since I’ve been in the business,“ one veteran entertainment exec says

Think FAST: Streaming experts told TheWrap they expect that the looming recession will cause the streaming industry to merge even more quickly into the new lane where it’s already heading: Free ad-supported streaming television — FAST for short. The list of FAST networks includes such entities as Pluto, Tubi and Amazon’s Freevee.

As premium subscription streaming services scramble to expand to ad-supported tiers to offset the loss of subscribers and slower-than-predicted growth (hello, Netflix and Disney+), industry players and dealmakers observe that FAST — long stereotyped as a haven for a financially struggling Gen Z audience to enjoy dusty network reruns for free — is poised to integrate access to premium content into their mix without the hefty price tag.

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Diane Haithman

Diane Haithman

Senior Entertainment Business Reporter • • @dhaithman Diane came to TheWrap from a position as Staff Reporter at The Los Angeles Business Journal, covering Entertainment/Media, Philanthropy and Style. Diane was a Los Angeles Times Staff Writer for two decades, covering arts, culture and the TV industry. Her novel Dark Lady of Hollywood was published to critical acclaim by Harvard Square Editions in 2014. She serves on the adjunct faculty of Emerson College Los Angeles and has taught feature writing at USC. Diane is co-author of the nonfiction book The Elder Wisdom Circle Guide for a Meaningful Life (Penguin/Plume 2007) and is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists-Los Angeles Chapter.