Roku Announces Five New Streaming Devices Between $30 and $130

Roku today announced "the biggest streaming player launch in Roku history," with the company revealing a total of five new devices that let users stream media onto their TVs, with varying levels of picture quality and features. The new additions to Roku's lineup join the Roku Streaming Stick, which got an upgrade in April and retails for $49.99.

With a price of $29.99, the company's new low-end Roku Express comes in even cheaper than the Streaming Stick and offers 1080p HD streaming "with a complete channel lineup." The Roku Express+, for $39.99, offers the same features but is outfitted for older TV sets, including a composite jack and A/V cable. Both Express models are aimed at users new to streaming, or those who want to extend Roku throughout their home at a cheaper rate.

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The Roku Express

The second tier of devices are called the Roku Premiere and Roku Premiere+, which run for $79.99 and $99.99, respectively. Both models have a quad-core processor and can stream 4K video in up to 60 frames per second, but the higher-cost Premiere+ also supports HDR "for vibrant picture quality," and has a headphone jack in its remote control.

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The Roku Premiere+

The last new Roku model -- the "fully loaded" Roku Ultra -- is the priciest at $129.99, and includes each feature of the previous models with the addition of support for Dolby Digital Plus decoding, voice search, and a feature that helps users find a lost remote. Each device announced today offers access to 3,500 streaming channels including 350,000 movies and TV episodes.

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The Roku Ultra

Roku players have features called "Hotel Connect" and "Dorm Connect" to make it easy to connect to public networks and stream when not at home. There's also a free iOS app [Direct Link] that lets users control their Roku device through an iPhone or iPad, and even gain access to features like voice search, private listening, and more.

The company said that each of the five new devices can be pre-ordered starting today and are "expected" to launch in retail stores on October 9. The Roku Express+ will be exclusively available in Walmart stores, however.

Tag: Roku


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21 weeks ago
For a company with a tiny fraction vs. Apple's deep cash & human resources, Roku sure GETS the concept of focusing on making the most of this kind of product and it's related offerings. Personally, I wish Apple would adopt an equivalent level of focus on their own little box instead of seeming to get around to showing it some attention every once in a while.

And I'm not really trying to bash Apple there- just basically showing some admiration for what a relatively small team with small cash can accomplish when they are singularly focused on doing the most they can with this kind of product. Just think what Apple could do with theirs if they were as focused.
Rating: 19 Votes
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21 weeks ago
I enjoy my Roku's and Apple Tv"s both very much, if Roku had a way i knew of to stream my iTunes purchased movies and shows, I probably wouldn't even have an Apple TV.
Rating: 7 Votes
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21 weeks ago
One day they might learn that most users don't care at all what the box looks like. If they can't tell within 3 seconds what the difference between Express, Premier+, and Ultra, then you don't need that many versions. Finally, for TV especially, the UI matters more than anything else. By UI I mean both screen and physical remote.

Why are there 4 different buttons that all look like they are pointing back in some way? Which one is the actual back button? Why does anyone want 4 dedicated app buttons? Why are the 4 dedicated app buttons in a different place on each remote? Does Roku actually expect someone to be a subscriber to both Netflix, Sling, and Hulu, when there is so much overlap between those services?
Rating: 5 Votes
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21 weeks ago
I really am looking forward to a single device that allows me to watch Netflix, Amazon, HBO and my local library that supports 4K and HDR. Having to use a combination of my smart TV, Apple TV and UHD BluRay player to watch these is kind of annoying.
Rating: 5 Votes
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21 weeks ago

I enjoy my Roku's and Apple Tv"s both very much, if Roky had a way i knew of to stream my iTunes purchased movies and shows, I probably wouldn't even have an Apple TV.


Install Plex on your Mac, point it towards the iTunes media folder. Install Plex on your Roku and enjoy.
Rating: 4 Votes
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21 weeks ago

Why are there 4 different buttons that all look like they are pointing back in some way? Which one is the actual back button? Why does anyone want 4 dedicated app buttons? Why are the 4 dedicated app buttons in a different place on each remote? Does Roku actually expect someone to be a subscriber to both Netflix, Sling, and Hulu, when there is so much overlap between those services?


I'd imagine they got paid to put each app button on - it's basically an ad for each of the companies. Roku is a small company - they need to make money somehow.

The 4 arrows pointing the same way are all very distinct and each have obvious and different functionality. If you get those mixed up, I think you probably gets the <, Backspace, Enter, and Left Arrow key on your computer's keyboard mixed up, too.

Roku really should have a cable box. All we're waiting on is a final decision from the FCC. The moment that decision is made, my Comcast box is being sent back and I'm buying something else. I just need some company - any company - to build a better cable box for me to buy.
Rating: 4 Votes
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21 weeks ago
I want a cheap audio AirPlay adapter from Apple.
Rating: 4 Votes
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21 weeks ago

Maybe a smart techie understands that one is rewind, one is back, one is left, and one is jump back 15 seconds (or reload?). But these things are supposed to be used by non-techie grandparents, spouses, and the like as an alternative to cable. Roku will never succeed until it figures out that UI, and that includes remote design, is of paramount importance. And that they are failing at it.

Weird. I have several "non-techies" in my household and so far nobody has had problems with this. The function of the buttons is pretty obvious by their placement next to other related buttons (and, in case of the "left" button, color).

The remotes I hate the most are the ones with gazillions of buttons that usually come with disc players, TVs, A/V receivers etc. ...
Rating: 4 Votes
Avatar
21 weeks ago

For a company with a tiny fraction vs. Apple's deep cash & human resources, Roku sure GETS the concept of focusing on making the most of this kind of product and it's related offerings. Personally, I wish Apple would adopt an equivalent level of focus on their own little box instead of seeming to get around to showing it some attention every once in a while.

And I'm not really trying to bash Apple there- just basically showing some admiration for what a relatively small team with small cash can accomplish when they are singularly focused on doing the most they can with this kind of product. Just think what Apple could do with theirs if they were as focused.

Even Amazon TV beats them. Considering Amazon was essentially still a bookseller when the iPod was being designed, that is a shame.



Mike
Rating: 4 Votes
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21 weeks ago
Roku interface is horrible.....I've had Apple TV since the 1st version, and now have Amazon Fire TV as well. Got Roku because I ditched cable for Playstation Vue (wish PS Vue had an App on ATV) and then grabbed the Fire TV for my bedroom because I disliked Roku so much. But I am finding that I am using Apple TV more and more with my PS Vue credentials and getting better access than just those single channels.
Rating: 3 Votes
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