We’re big fans of Roku’s streaming media boxes—I have one in my home theater and use it constantly. The company just announced the Roku 3, which improves on the device with a faster processor, and new remote.
The new processor, combined with an updated interface is supposed to make navigation and browsing faster. The biggest change to the interface appears to be a switch from the single horizontal navigation style to a grid style, which puts more of a user’s channels on the screen at once. Instead of navigating left and right only, you can go left, right, up and down.
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The other big change is in the remote which now includes a headphone jack (and a set of purple earbuds). Audio is wirelessly sent to the remote and into the headphone output, making any set of headphones essentially wireless—that’s pretty neat. The remote also doubles as a motion-sensing game controller for Roku games.
Roku 3 comes fully loaded with 750 channels, 1080p output, dual-band wireless, Ethernet and USB ports, and a microSD slot.
It will be available in April for $99.
The new users interface will also be available as a firmware update to current generation Roku devices – Roku LT, Roku HD (model 2500R), Roku 2 HD, Roku 2 XD, Roku 2 XS and the Roku Streaming Stick.