There was a lot of reporting on HBO giving away free content last week with very little detail about how you could find it. Well after the last few days we have explored the issue making a video on how to watch HBO’s free content via its website and apps but have run across an issue regarding Roku. The Roku apps for HBO Now and HBO Go do not have a section of their apps dedicated to the free content. What Roku has done is that instead of letting users get the content from HBO’s apps, it has instead populated the Roku Channel with the content from HBO inside of the various categories of the platform.
This is not the easiest way to find the content and we worked for a while inside of the app to see if there is a way to zero in on HBO content in particular. At the time of this writing there is not. So here is what we can tell you. The stuff is there. But you have to look for it. For instance in a basic Roku search you can find listings for The Sopranos. But there is nothing that says watch it for free. If you launch it via the Roku Channel it will load and play. On the other hand if you search for the show within the Roku Channel you will see it listed for free. The final season is listed as Members Only but it loaded for us just fine without being signed into anything.
Roku would really do people a favor if they added a row to the Roku Channel like HBO did so that it was easier for their users to access the content. It could go even further by breaking it down by content type in its own section. If that happens people will certainly appreciate it. I hope this info is helpful.
See demo of watching Free HBO content on platforms besides Roku below.