With the Christmas shopping season just mere weeks away, Roku has announced plans to revamp its family of streaming media players. Whether you have $100 to blow or just half that, Roku has something compact to stuff into someone’s stocking—or your own AV cabinet.
The company just introduced a trio of streaming set-top boxes, known as the Roku LT, Roku 1 and Roku 2. All three promise a better overall user experience. The Roku LT has support for 720p streaming, while the Roku 1 bumps that up to 1080p HD video. The Roku 2 adds in a dual-band wireless and a built-in headphone jack for private listening, a feature that was previously exclusive to the Roku 3.
Of course, all Roku products have access to the Roku Channel Store, which features over 1,000 channels in the U.S. Available selections include Netflix, VUDU, Amazon Instant Video, Hulu Plus, Amazon Cloud Player, VEVO, and much more.
Wisely, the company hasn’t touched the Roku 3. It’s exactly the same, with all of the features above, plus Ethernet and USB ports and an enhanced remote with the built-in headphone jack and motion-control for gaming. It’s selling now, with an MSRP of $99.99. [For more information on that box, check out EH Buyer’s Scorecard: Roku 3 Streaming Player.]
As an added bonus, Roku also just announced plans to put M-GO into the Channel Store. This offers yet another way to access movies and TV shows, all through the Roku interface.
The new Roku LT player will be exclusive to the U.S., with an MSRP of $49.99. The Roku 1 and Roku 2 will sell in the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and the Republic of Ireland, priced at $59.99 and $79.99, respectively. All three are now available for pre-order, with boxes shipping sometime in the beginning of October 2013.
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Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at www.rachelcericola.com.