The battle for the living room heated up this summer, when Google's Chromecast
streaming-video gadget hit the scene, sold out immediately, and put
competitors like Roku on notice. Now, Roku is striking back with a revamped
lineup of TV-streaming devices.
Roku's hardware now features a curvier, less boxy look, better video quality
and new audio options, while software changes directly address one of the
biggest complaints about Chromecast: Its inability to handle local streaming
from mobile devices. Here's how.
## What's New In The Lineup
Roku's hardware updates are fairly straightforward, though it's notable that
none of its retail prices have changed. The $60 Roku 1 now offers 1080p video
quality, up from 720p, while the $80 Roku 2 features improved dual-band WiFi
and radio frequency remote control with integrated headphone jack. (The $50
Roku LT still only streams at 720p.)
On the software side, Roku devices have a new interface that offers premium
placement to the new streaming service M-Go, a relatively recent partnership
between the DreamWorks studio and the monstrous hybrid entertainment
technology company Technicolor. M-Go sells and rents movies and TV shows, then
streams them to viewers. Roku will handle billing for M-Go, and will ...