New Roku streaming players land to combat Fire TV device deluge

Roku has refreshed its line-up of streaming players with its entry-level and top-line devices both boosted.

The new Roku Express 2019 still offers HD streaming but benefits from a 10% smaller form factor, while retaining the option to power the device via the USB port on your television set.

Roku says the adhesive strip and bundled-in HDMI cable are along for the ride, making the $29.99/£29.99 price tag an even better deal. The company says the streamer is perfect for first-timers or for secondary televisions.

In the UK, the company is introducing the new Roku Premiere, which it says offers up to 4K HDR visuals, along with a quad-core processor and “low-profile form factor.” There’s also a bundled in HDMI cable and it costs £49.99. The Streaming Stick+ remains in the line up at £39.99.

In the US, company is boosting its best streaming device, the Roku Ultra 2019 for the United States market, which continues to offer 4K HDR video. There’s no miniaturisation here, but it does get a big speed boost, new shortcut buttons and an enhanced voice remote.

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The firm adds: “New features include fast channel launch, which gets you to your entertainment faster by improving launch times for top channels on the Roku platform, and personal shortcut buttons on the enhanced voice remote that offer personalization and one-touch control of your entertainment.”

The company told The Verge, those app launches are up to 30% faster for some applications.

Elsewhere, the company is updating existing devices to the Roku OS 9.2. It doesn’t appear like there’s too much in the way of new features here, just “updates to improve your streaming experience on the Roku platform.”

The launches come after Amazon announced a slew of new Fire TV devices at the IFA tech show earlier this month. Roku also launched a sound bar with the Roku OS integrated.

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