Print 16 comment(s) - last by woody1.. on Mar 6 at 1:53 PM

New Streaming Stick plugs right into a HDMI port

Taking direct aim at Google’s $35 Chromecast, Roku has announced that a new version of its Streaming Stick is now available. The new version plugs directly into an empty HDMI port on your TV. Roku says that the new version of the Streaming Stick is perfect for wall mounted TVs.
The device has 1200 channels of movies, TV, music, news, kids shows and more. It supports resolutions up to 1080p and has a TV user interface with Roku Search integrated. The new Streaming Stick also ships with a Wi-Fi remote control (unlike the Chromecast). The remote has buttons for directly accessing Netflix, Amazon, Blockbuster, and MGo.

Apps for Android and iOS smartphones are also supported.
The updated Streaming Stick is available now in the U.S. for pre-order at $49.99. The device will be available in retail stores in April. 

Source: Roku

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Will it work in hotels?
By woody1 on 3/5/2014 5:30:20 PM , Rating: 2
Chromecast is not useful for the main thing that I would want it for, i.e., hotel room TVs. Currently, I just use Android devices with hmdi adapters for travel viewing. If the Roku works for that, I might be interested in it.

RE: Will it work in hotels?
By kmmatney on 3/5/2014 6:23:02 PM , Rating: 2
That sounds like a lot of hassle while traveling - I just use by notebook directly (it's 17", though, I can see wanting a bigger screen if you have a small laptop).

RE: Will it work in hotels?
By runutz on 3/5/2014 6:43:26 PM , Rating: 2
Depends on how light your traveling. On business trips where you need a stand alone device (IE has a screen) I can see where you're coming from. A small device like this, a NUC or other device that utilizes the larger hotel screen has its benefits.

As I just retired, I've been looking for small entertainment devices such as this.

RE: Will it work in hotels?
By woody1 on 3/6/2014 1:53:44 PM , Rating: 2
These days, I only travel with a small Android tablet, which is a little small for watching movies. Often, I can connect the tablet up to a TV and watch whatever I want to on the larger screen (better sound, too). The Chromecast would be great for this, if it worked over hotel wifi, but, unfortunately, it doesn't.

RE: Will it work in hotels?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/6/2014 8:33:16 AM , Rating: 1
Why wouldn't Chromecast work for hotel room TV's? Honest question, just curious.

RE: Will it work in hotels?
By brshoemak on 3/6/2014 1:47:07 PM , Rating: 3
Because most hotels have a captive portal set up, so you can connect to their wireless network easily but when you open a web browser a page will pop up requiring you to enter a code (or something) and then agree that you won't use their wifi for nefarious purposes.

A Chromecast has no method for opening a web page, entering a code and agreeing to a ToS. Thus no worky. Bandwidth can also be an issue for streaming.

I took a Kindle (eInk) to a hotel and thankfully the Kindle has an experimental web browser which, while painful as hell to use, did allow me to open the web page and get online using their captive portal.

RE: Will it work in hotels?
By woody1 on 3/6/2014 1:49:09 PM , Rating: 2
Usually, when using hotel wifi (or other hotspot), you connect on wifi, then you have to login on a web page. There's no way to do that 2nd step with a Chromecast device.

Also, in most cases, hotel wifi routers are set up to isolate each WLAN connection from the other WLAN connections for security reasons. This also makes the Chromecast inoperable, because you have to be able to control it from another device, e.g., your phone or laptop.

A simpler approach is just to forget the Chromecast and connect an Android phone or tablet to the PC using an MHL or Slimport adapter. That avoids all the wifi setup problems.

By SAN-Man on 3/5/2014 10:50:37 AM , Rating: 2
Really cheesy...

By dgingerich on 3/5/2014 11:07:37 AM , Rating: 2
I'd be happy with them if they'd just have included a Hulu button. I only use Hulu, Netflix, and Amazon. So, this would be nice for me.

By tayb on 3/5/2014 11:39:38 AM , Rating: 1
Why? It lowers the price of the unit and provides quick access to a few features. If you don't use those features just enjoy the lower price. If you do, well enjoy both. I don't see the negatives.

By SAN-Man on 3/5/2014 1:30:51 PM , Rating: 2
They're cheesy. Might be OK for your dorm room, most people don't like logos all over their devices.

By tayb on 3/5/2014 2:55:05 PM , Rating: 2
It's not a sticker that servers no purpose it is a button that servers a function. Press Netflix to go directly to Netflix. It's functional advertising.

I would actually guess that most people could care less that there is a useful button on their remote.

By SAN-Man on 3/5/2014 4:00:47 PM , Rating: 3
It cheapens the device, functionality or not. It also dates the device, those services could be gone in 6 months (Block Buster anyone).

Lose the remote...
By theplaidfad on 3/5/2014 12:23:53 PM , Rating: 2
... and drop the price to $35.00. Now you're competing with the Google offering.

RE: Lose the remote...
By brshoemak on 3/6/2014 1:40:50 PM , Rating: 2
...or keep the remote but add a QWERTY keyboard to the back and drop the price to $40.

Increase remote size as needed for QWERTY functionality.

By CU on 3/5/2014 2:57:01 PM , Rating: 2
I thought they quit streaming. I remember getting an email from them a year or two ago saying I would no longer be able to stream movies from them. Maybe it was just for my device (Blu-Ray player), but I thought it sounded like they were closing up shop.

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