Roku introduced on Wednesday its third-generation streaming player, the Roku 3. The refresh includes a faster processor and an enhanced remote packed with a headphone jack (and included earbuds) for private listening. It also introduces the company's new user interface which promises a more fluid experience during browsing and navigation.
"Roku 3 introduces thoughtful new features that customers will love," said founder and CEO Anthony Wood. "The intuitive new interface makes it easy to find movies and shows quickly while the private listening mode is perfect for late-night streamers who don’t want to wake up the family."
In addition to the headphone jack, volume buttons on the remote allow the user to control the audio while private listening mode is in use. The new remote also doubles as a motion-sensing controller for playing games like Angry Birds Space. Even more, there's an Android and iOS app that transforms a phone or tablet into "the ultimate Roku command center".
As for the new interface, Roku said it will also be rolled out as a free update to all current-generation Roku devices including the Roku LT, Roku HD 2500R, Roku 2 HD, Roku 2 XD, Roku 2 XS and the Roku Streaming Stick. "Roku’s new interface maintains the simplicity that Roku is known for, while providing improved access to channels," the company added. "And the fully integrated Roku Channel Store and one-stop search lets customers easily pinpoint what they want to watch – and get there instantly."
The new Roku 3 offers more than 750 channels of entertainment including Time Warner's TWC TV, Blockbuster On Demand, iHeartRadio, Netflix, Hulu Plus, Pandora, Crackle, Amazon Instant Video, NBC News, and more. Other channels launching soon include FOX NOW, PBS and PBS Kids. On the specs end, Roku doesn't provide a detailed list, but said it sports dual-band Wireless N connectivity, an Ethernet port, USB ports, a microSD card slot, and 1080p HD support. It weighs 5 ounces and measures just 3.5- x 3.5- x 1-inches.
The new Roku 3 is available now in the States for $99.99 USD through Roku.com and online retailers like Amazon. It will be offered in retail stores nationwide beginning in April.