News aggregator app Flipboard is launching a new ad-free curated video service called Flipboard TV that will come preinstalled on Samsung’s new Galaxy S20 phones and cost $3 a month. The service will be exclusive to the S20 for three months, and then roll out to all the other places Flipboard is available.
Flipboard TV focuses on short-form videos delivered in a customized news feed, which you’ll find under a new dedicated tab in the Flipboard app. The feed will algorithmically suggest videos based on your interests, and users can follow videos based on things like topic or publication to populate their feed.
Some of the outlets already on board for Flipboard TV include The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Rolling Stone, Variety, and more along with local news outlets in cities like Des Moines, Orlando, and Sacramento. Wired says its publisher Conde Nast is also in talks. Flipboard says there will be over 100 sources at launch, and the service will focus on professionally-produced videos in a premium, ad-free setting. Flipboard’s CEO tells Wired that the company has no plans to produce its own original video content.
Again, that premium doesn’t come for free. Flipboard TV will cost $2.99 a month, though Samsung Galaxy S20 owners will get a three-month free trial. Although Flipboard has historically been a gratis app, the company is betting on concentrating high quality, short-form videos in one place, as opposed to platforms like YouTube which can be a grab bag.
Of course, there are plenty of places that offer ad-free video experiences, like Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, and, when it launches, Quibi. But Flipboard CEO Mike McCue doesn’t seem to be worried about subscription fatigue, telling Wired that “It’s a kind of renaissance era right now with premium quality content.”