Roku, one of the big players in streaming entertainment, announced at CES today that it has secured more Roku Ready partners in the coming year. These companies will release new televisions that can take advantage of the Roku Streaming Stick.
In 2013, you'll see new smart TVs from Coby Eletronics, Harman Kadon, Hisense Electronic, TCL, Voxx and Westinghouse Digital that use the Roku Streaming Stick to "provide an integrated streaming experience for their customers." These partners join the already impressive lineup of TV manufacturers supporting Roku including 3M, Hiachi, Insignia and more.
“Consumer electronics makers are turning to the Roku Streaming Stick to create Smart TVs, projectors, Blu-ray players, digital antennas – and even audio receivers – that give consumers instant access to the highly-rated Roku streaming platform, filled with compelling entertainment and yet incredibly easy to use,” said Chas Smith, general manager of OEM business, Roku. “With 14 CE manufacturers now turning to Roku for streaming solutions, consumers will have many choices in 2013 when shopping for new, innovative and affordable electronics.”
Roku believes its streaming stick offers a far cheaper solution to smart TVs needing regular updates as the consumer can replace the streaming stick with the newest model at a fraction of the price of a new television. Google will tell you that its solved this problem as well with its Google TV platform by providing regular software updates and a cheap set-top box that works with most HD televisions. Both will be vying for the attention of smart TV consumers this week at CES.
In other news, Roku announced that its platform is now host to over 700 channels. Some of the new channels include Blockbuster On Demand, Dailymotion, Flingo, PBS, Syfy, VEVO and more. It's also host to new music and casual games from the likes of Amazon Cloud Player, Spotify and Big Fish Unlimited.
“When we launched the first Roku player in 2008, it was the very first device to stream Netflix to the TV and offered just that one channel. Today, the content universe is vastly different with many content producers and owners embracing delivery over the Internet and recognizing the broad appeal and strength of the Roku platform,” said Steve Shannon, general manager of content and services, Roku. “We’re excited to say we have more entertainment choices on Roku today – 700 channels – and more importantly, we have the best brands in streaming entertainment.”
Smart TVs and online content delivery were big ticket items at CES 2012. It's already looking like it's going to be an even bigger deal this year as more players enter the scene hoping to jump on the smart TV bandwagon before the rumored Apple TV has a chance to take over the market.