Roku Announces New Devices Including $70 'Streaming Stick Plus' With 4K HDR Support

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Roku today announced five new streaming devices that are available for pre-order now, and will launch in stores around October 8. One of the notable unveilings surrounds the "Streaming Stick Plus," which allows viewers to stream 4K Ultra HD and HDR video content up to 60 frames per second for $69.99. This marks one of the cheapest entry points for a 4K streaming device on the market, and is over $100 cheaper than Apple's lowest-cost 4K box at $179.99.

The Streaming Stick Plus comes included with a remote control that supports voice control and TV power functionality, as well as a boost to wireless streaming performance thanks to an advanced wireless receiver built directly into the power cord. This helps the Streaming Stick Plus offer "up to four times the wireless range" of the Roku Streaming Stick from 2016. There's also a new version of the lower-cost Streaming Stick for HD streaming at $49.99.

"Our new streaming player line up provides performance, price and features to meet our users needs so they can sit back, relax and enjoy their TV viewing experience even more," said Chas Smith, general manager of Roku TVs and players. "Consumers will love our new sleek Roku Streaming Stick+ with an innovative advanced wireless receiver that gives up to four times the wireless range and a remote that controls TV volume and power. It makes 4K and HDR streaming simple."
Other announcements included a second-generation "Roku Express" and "Roku Express Plus," which are five times more powerful than their predecessors. The Roku Express Plus is a Walmart exclusive, similar to the previous iteration of the device, and includes options to connect to classic TVs through composite A/V ports. Roku Express costs $29.99 and Roku Express Plus costs $39.99.

The top-of-the-line "Roku Ultra" device is getting updated as well, with improved wireless performance, HD, 4K, and HDR streaming up to 60 fps, a port for an ethernet cable, and a micro SD card slot. The Roku Ultra comes with the company's voice-enabled remote control, which includes a headphone jack for private listening similar to previous generations. Roku Ultra is priced at $99.99.


Each new streaming device announced by Roku today can be pre-ordered now from Roku, Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon, and a few other retailers, while in-store availability is said to be coming around October 8. Those who purchase a Roku device in October will receive a $10 Vudu credit so they can rent or purchase a film or TV show on the streaming service. This offer ends on October 31, but the company wasn't specific as to whether the deal will be available at all retailers.

Article Link: Roku Announces New Devices Including $70 'Streaming Stick Plus' With 4K HDR Support
 
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DaveOP

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I wonder if Roku will update the software with this. I test drove the Ultra and the Nvidia Shield, and the Shield software was SO much better. Roku has a good thing going with these boxes in terms of content, but their software is pretty outdated and slow.
 
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DTphonehome

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Apple really overpriced the new Apple TV. I’m going to buy one because I’m locked into the apple ecosystem, but it really seems like unnecessary price premium over the competitors.
 
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spazzcat

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People should by what then want. I buy Apple because I know they will not sell my data, Roku, makes money off selling your data.

Roku collects money two ways: by selling hardware, which it calls “players”; and by selling advertising and taking a cut of revenues from the video publishers on its platform. The player business, which constitutes the majority of Roku’s revenues, is declining. The ad business is growing...
http://fortune.com/2017/09/06/data-sheet-roku-ipo/
 

MysteryMii215

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HDR10 is the most likely standard. It's everywhere and more highly adopted.
Yes, but more TV makers are putting support for Dolby Vision inside their TVs this year than last year (Sony, TCL, and Phillips joined LG and Vizio this year). Plus, it looks better than HDR10 (which already looked good), and there's the backing of the Dolby brand.
 
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jamesrick80

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Yes, but more TV makers are putting support for Dolby Vision inside their TVs this year than last year (Sony, TCL, and Phillips joined LG and Vizio this year). Plus, it looks better than HDR10 (which already looked good), and there's the backing of the Dolby brand.
Even TVs without native Dolby vision support can get support with a firmware update on TVs that already have HDR capability.

https://www.whathifi.com/advice/dolby-vision-hdr-everything-you-need-to-know
 

MrXiro

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Yes, but more TV makers are putting support for Dolby Vision inside their TVs this year than last year (Sony, TCL, and Phillips joined LG and Vizio this year). Plus, it looks better than HDR10 (which already looked good), and there's the backing of the Dolby brand.
I think the point is that HDR10 is already widely adopted and with $0 license fee to use on the hardware manufacturer end. Dolby should either do a price cut or drop the licensing fee to use their codec if they want it to succeed or it's going to go the way of Beta Max (the actual superior tape technology) during the VHS/Beta format war.

Blu-ray was actually the superior tech during the HD-DVD/BD format war but it was mostly because Sony put a "free" BD player inside every PS3 back then.
 

b11051973

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HDR10 is the most likely standard. It's everywhere and more highly adopted. Dolby vision doesn't even require hardware, it's a simple software update even in systems that only support HDR10.
Both will most likely stick around. Just like DTS and Dolby Digital have lived together for audio for years.

Dolby Vision is better, so I use it where I can. I have most of my streaming library on VUDU, which has supported Dolby Vision only since they started offering 4K.

There has also been rumors of HDR10+, which would make the HDR10 standard more like Dolby Vision.
 

Tycho24

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Apple really overpriced the new Apple TV. I’m going to buy one because I’m locked into the apple ecosystem, but it really seems like unnecessary price premium over the competitors.
A10 Fusion chip is obviously worth a healthy premium...
 

tbayrgs

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IMO, none of the players in the market have a clear advantage. I have an Nvidia Shield TV, Amazon Fire, and Apple TV 4K, with none being a clear cut winner.

The Nvidia is my favorite interface, has native integration with my HDHomerun and can play content from Google Play, Amazon, and Vudu 4K but of course, no iTunes content. Built in Chromecast support is allow easily the best way to cast content from another device. However, Android TV has the worst support from third party devs (bunch of common network apps aren’t available) and the remote is a flaky POS.

The Fire TV has all the requisite app support and obviously is the best way to view Amazon content but not a big fan of the UI and no Google Play or iTunes content support. It’s also the laggiest interface.

The Apple TV’s interface works just fine, setup is a breeze if you use an iPhone and one of the supported TV Providers, and their remote app is the best. It also allows me to play content from Google and Amazon (though presently only via AirPlay and not in 4K) but still no Vudu 4K (less of an issue for me personally now). But as mentioned, 4K support outside of iTunes is less than the competition (nothing higher than HD for YouTube?! o_O). And the remote is also a steaming pile of ****.

I was never a fan of the Roku experience and these new offerings won’t lure me to their devices. And yes they’re cheaper but big picture, an extra $80 is relatively small compared to what we all spend on all of our other tech and content. I’ll take the native integration with Google or Apple of the other options for a bit of extra cash.
 

Alan Wynn

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HDR10 is the most likely standard. It's everywhere and more highly adopted. Dolby vision doesn't even require hardware, it's a simple software update even in systems that only support HDR10.
Dolby Vision does require hardware (although there are rumors that a sufficiently powerful CPU could implement it in software, there are no examples in the wild and given how underpowered most smart televisions/streaming boxes are, it is not likely to be an option for many), and provides a noticeablely superior experience. Lionsgate, Paramount, Sony, Universal, and Warner Brothers all support Dolby Vision. Streaming services HBO, iTunes, Netflix and VuDu support it.
[doublepost=1506958985][/doublepost]
There has also been rumors of HDR10+, which would make the HDR10 standard more like Dolby Vision.
HDR+ is not a rumor, but is Samsung's competitor. Only Fox and Panasonic have agreeded to support it. It is unclear it will get any traction.
 
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agsystems

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Apple really overpriced the new Apple TV. I’m going to buy one because I’m locked into the apple ecosystem, but it really seems like unnecessary price premium over the competitors.
agreed...I normally wait for the refurbished models to arrive - I can afford it but I am not happy overpaying for a TV streamer. Basically if Roku supported Airplay that will make it no brainier solution.
 
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mwd25

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People should by what then want. I buy Apple because I know they will not sell my data, Roku, makes money off selling your data.
That would be valid if you had zero content on your box. Great, Apple wont sell your info, problem is you then have Hulu, Neflix, Amazon, Vudu, HBO Now, Sling, CBS All Access, SyFy, FX, Brit Box, and whatever other apps you load on to your box to have content. They may sell your stuff. So, unless you want an empty box with only your media and no apps, Its ridiculous to make your choice of device based on that.
 
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Rigby

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Apple obviously did market research when setting the price for the ATV, but to me the ATV pricing seems penny-wise, pound-foolish. In the long run they'll make more money selling iTunes content than ATV boxes. It seems shortsighted to price the only device that allows people to watch iTunes content on their TVs so much higher than the direct competition. My guess is that iTunes will continue to lose market share to Amazon and others as they already have over the last few years.
 
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MrX8503

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grasping at straws ;)

they have the advantage on performance.. let's just hope someone will use it or the price really can't be justified.
AFAIK, Apple TV 4K is the only player that has 4K UI? Anyway, the entire package of the Apple TV is very compelling and I bet many are willing to pay the premium.

I started investing in iTunes movies and it paid off when Apple upgraded HD movies to 4K for free. They also brought the price of 4K movies down. Being in the Apple ecosystem, I can easily buy/consume movies on any Apple device. I may not buy 4K physical media considering how expensive 4K players are with Dolby Vision support.

I think the Apple TV 4K is hard to beat given the convenience and quality.
 

gnipgnop

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Keep in mind that Roku has a net deficit for their first 15 years of operation. That pricing is a bit of a mirage when it comes to "success".
 

Tycho24

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Worked a treat for me, infuse now cruises through encoding ;) was stutter city with the ATV
That’s awesome to hear!
I actually have a Roku TV & think it’s not too bad; certainly far better than any UI I’ve seen built into a “Smart TV”... I’ve used Plex Media Server to stream from my Mac Mini before.
Once everything begins playing it’s fine... but certainly the load times on apps like HBO, Amazon, & Netflix (even Pandora, tbh) make it clear that it isn’t a device w/ 2gb of RAM, and a custom built incredibly fast mobile processor.
I look forward to seeing the latest ATV in action & am pretty confident that when I get my next TV w/ HDR support & whatnot, I’ll finally go the ATV route!
 
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