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The Rise of FAST Channels

November 28, 2022

Ready to live life in the FAST lane?

In this case, FAST stands for Free Ad-supported Streaming TV which includes streaming linear TV programs without paying for any subscription. It is an expanded version of conventionalTV that is streamed over internet-connected devices like CTV. A few current examples of FAST streaming that you may recognize are Pluto TV, Xumo, Tubi, Peacock, The Roku Channel, IMDBTV, and Samsung TV+.

Reports show an expected $6.1 billion in ad revenue for FAST platforms in the U.S. by 2025 with a reported $706 million in U.S. ad revenue brought in back in 2019.

Adoption of theFAST channel is rapid since it’s free to watch, doesn’t require a typical set-up like cable or Pay TV, and provides a vast array of linear and on-demand content to the viewers. Consumers find it a convenient replacement for traditional PayTV as they have hundreds of free-to-watch options from the local news to NBC’s The Voice accessible 24/7 without any cord connection.

Recent reports from Comcast have shown that in the United States, 6 out of 10 homes are using a FAST platform with around 1,400 FAST channels active within the U.S. across 22 different providers. The driver of this growth is the number of major media networks joining the FAST channel lane which include Paramount buying Pluto TV in 2019 for $340 million, toComcast buying Xumo in 2020 for over $100 million, to Fox buying Tubi in 2020 for $490 million.

Tubi and Pluto TV have had some great accomplishments as Tubi grew its ad revenue by 30 percent to $165 million which was driven by a 50 percent increase in viewing time. The company’s 33 million monthly active users have watched around 1.3 billion hours on the platform. Similarly, Pluto TV recently achieved 1 percent of overall TV viewership in September.

With subscription apps constantly raising costs, FAST channels are becoming more and more appealing. The future for these platforms is powerful because it is providing a massive opportunity for media distributors to explore new revenue streams and reach a new base of audience digitally.


Due to the ability to effectively connect with niche audiences, FAST platforms can be a strategic integration for your business. Ready to move to the fast lane? Contact us at sales@adxcelerant.com today to get started.