Flagship Media Player Debuts New User Interface and Remote with Headphone Jack for Private Listening
Roku just introduced their fastest and most powerful set-top box for streaming 1080p HD Internet videos to your HDTV. The company is calling their new product Roku 3, which succeeds a trio of Roku 2 models. The new Roku 3 offers a faster processor and an enhanced remote with a headphone jack for private listening, plus a new user interface enabling more fluid browsing and navigation.
Roku’s new interface maintains the simplicity that Roku is known for, while providing improved access to channels. And the fully integrated Roku Channel Store and one-stop search lets customers easily pinpoint what they want to watch – and get there instantly. The new interface will automatically roll out as a free software update in April 2013 to all current-generation Roku devices – Roku LT, Roku HD (model 2500R), Roku 2 HD, Roku 2 XD, Roku 2 XS and the Roku Streaming Stick.
Roku 3 comes fully loaded with more than 750 channels of entertainment, 1080p HD support, dual-band wireless, Ethernet and USB ports, and a microSD slot. Recently launched channels on the Roku platform include TWC TVTM, BlockBuster On Demand and iHeartRadio. Other channels launching soon include FOX NOW, PBS and PBS KIDS.
The Roku 3 enhanced remote features a built-in headphone jack for private listening with the included in-ear headphones. Volume buttons on the remote offer a convenient way to control audio while private listening mode is in use. Additionally, the remote doubles as a motion-sensing game controller for playing games like Angry Birds Space. For even more entertainment possibilities, Roku’s free app for iOS and Android devices transforms a phone into the ultimate Roku command center.
Despite all the goods things Roku 3 offers, Walt Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal identified two glaring omissions consumers should be aware:
- No YouTube or iTunes
- No Wireless Streaming from Smart Devices
Interestingly, Roku also dropped Bluetooth support from Roku 3. However, on the plus side home theater enthusiasts should note the new Roku 3 supports up to 7.1 digital surround pass through over HDMI, while the prior model only supported up to 5.1.
Price and Availability
The Roku 3 (model 4200R) streaming player is available now in the United States through Roku.com, Amazon.com and other leading online retailers for $99.99. It will also be available in retail stores nationwide beginning in April 2013.