YouTube is starting to provide movies for free


YouTube's new Free to Watch section now hosts about 100 feature-length titles that span movie genres, and you don't have to be a subscriber to YouTube's premium service to stream any of them.

As AdAge reports, YouTube chose to introduce free, ad-supported movie streams because it's what users want, with Rohit Dhawan, director of product management at YouTube, stating "We saw this opportunity based on user demand, beyond just offering paid movies".

First noticed by, YouTube began launching ad-supported Hollywood films under a section on its Movies & Shows vertical.

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YouTube reportedly plans to grow the Free to Watch section as time goes on.

Sponsorship will also depend on how far movie studios are willing and able to adapt to the growing market of digital streaming for films.

Dhawan said there may eventually be a way for advertisers to pay to sponsor individual movies, giving users complimentary views and exclusive screenings. At the moment, the list of free movies is relatively small - around 100 or so - but YouTube says that the catalog will be expanding over time. It also comes after Roku introduced its own free, ad-supported movie selection called The Roku Channel which is available on the web. However, several movies are from the MGM library, which includes the Rocky movies, original Terminator, Legally Blonde, Pink Panther series, and Four Weddings and a Funeral.