Rooster Teeth is launching its subscription-video service on Apple TV and Microsoft Xbox One — bringing its sci-fi, anime, video-game and geek-culture programming to the biggest screen in the house.
The company is banking on the move to grow subscriber rolls: Rooster Teeth now has 200,000 paying customers, up 48% from 135,000 subs in June when it rebranded its $5-per-month SVOD offering as Rooster Teeth First. Rooster Teeth was acquired two years ago by Fullscreen Media, which is majority owned by AT&T-Chernin Group’s Otter Media digital video joint venture.
RT First subscribers have access more than 5,000 hours of original content, with 25 hours of new programming weekly. The Apple TV and Xbox One apps expand on existing access to the service from the Rooster Teeth website and iPhone and Android apps. Rooster Teeth’s First service will be launching on more living-room devices through VRV, the subscription-video bundles from Otter Media’s Ellation group.
“As we’ve expanded into more premium content, where episodes can be up to an hour long, we’ve realized our audience wants the option of a lean-back experience, to watch these shows from their couch, and our new apps support that,” said Matt Hullum, Rooster Teeth’s CEO and co-founder.
Exclusive original content on Rooster Teeth First include season 4 of anime series “RWBY” (pictured above); “Day 5,” an apocalyptic dramatic series in which sleep suddenly becomes fatal, and “Crunch Time,” a half-hour sci-fi action comedy starring Samm Levine (“Freaks and Geeks,” “Inglorious Basterds”), Avery Monsen (“High Maintenance,” Maron”) and Nick Rutherford (“Good Neighbor”).
Other recent programming launches on Rooster Teeth include several live talk show series, including “Always Open,” “Theater Mode,” “Fan Service” and “Heroes & Halfwits”; animated series “Camp Camp”; and three feature-length documentaries.
Rooster Teeth still offers free, ad-supported content but has shifted focus to the SVOD business. The digital studio — whose first hit, comedic sci-fi series “Red vs. Blue,” predated the launch of YouTube — has 28 million subscribers to its YouTube network, plus 3 million unique monthly visitors to RoosterTeeth.com and 1.8 million registered community members.
In addition to the baseline RT First service, Rooster Teeth offers hardcore fans First Double Gold, a $34.99 monthly package that includes VIP access to events like its annual RTX convention, a monthly mailing of merchandise (a la Birchbox), and other perks.