Roku Launches Cheaper HD, Wireless Streaming Set-top Boxes
Roku today introduced its fall product product lineup with lower priced, higher definition options to stream internet content to HDTVs, getting the jump on both Google's higher priced Google TV box from Logitech and Apple's AppleTV due to ship in two or three weeks.
The Roku box has been around since 2002, but the company has upgraded its offerings to match the demand for HD streaming from internet sources such as Netflix, compact size, wireless connection and lower price. For as little as $60, HDTV owners can add Internet content without buying a new television.
"Customers can now buy an HD-capable Roku player with wireless for 40 percent less than the price of our original $100 Roku HD player," Anthony Wood, CEO of Roku, said. "Or, think of it this way: for around the price of two Blu-ray discs, a Roku player brings you access to limitless instant streaming entertainment choices available today and in the future."
The entry-level $60 Roku HD streams video at 720p, is a compact five inches square and one inch deep, has built-in wireless connectivity and includes composite AV cables so that it can be connected to nearly any TV, including standard definition sets.
For another $20, Roku XD streams at full 1080p HD. The top tier box, the Roku XD/S at $100, adds a USB port to connect any USB-equipped device and play stored music and movies. The XD and XDS offer an instant replay feature: skip back in 10 second increments without a rebuffering delay.
All Roku boxes include Netflix Watch Instantly streaming movies, Amazon Video On Demand, live and on-demand sports from MLB.TV, streaming music from Pandora, MP3tunes, MOG and Radio Time, photo sharing with Flickr and Facebook integration, and other news and entertainment channels, totaling 85 channels from 50 sources. As new sources come to Roku, they are delivered automatically to the box through the Roku connection.
Roku boxes are available on Amazon.com and Roku.com
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