As tipped back in November, Roku have begun streaming Netflix content in high-definition. Owners of the Netflix Player by Roku will find their media players automatically updating to firmware version 1.5 over "the next few weeks", at which point the will be able to access Netflix's catalog of "hundreds" of high-definition titles.
Netflix streaming multimedia players are heating up with HD content. Folk at Roku has revealed plan, at its public discussion forum, to deliver Netflix movies in HD by the end of year. Joining the recently announced Xbox 360, the soon-to-update Roku player will be the next Netflix Networked streaming player to support HD content.
In what would seem at first glance a surprising move, Roku have opened up their Netflix Player box to tinkerers by releasing the GPL code for the Linux-based download device. It turns out that the DRM decoding is all handled by the NXP PNX8935 chip, probably satisfying any of Netflix's concerns that opening the box up would potentially impinge on their copyright responsibilities.
Netflix are pretty much synonymous with mail-delivery films in the US, and the company is now trying to do the same for internet-streamed media. The Netflix Player by Roku is the first piece of hardware promising to bring download movies to your TV, and going by the launch-day reviews it sounds like they've got a winner on their hands. $99.99 gets you a compact set-top box that, when linked to your online Netflix account, lets you play from the company's 10,000 strong catalogue of titles, automatically selecting the highest resolution your broadband can support.
Saturday is a day for putting ones feet up on a small, raised stool, supping from a glass of slightly warmed cinnamon milk and listening to the latest in Czech talk-radio; Roku have obviously known this for years, which is why they're taking advantage of that wireless network you've set up (you have got one, haven't you?) to stream music around your house with the SoundBridge. Starting with the essentials of an alarm clock (in fact an atomic one, so you need never set the time) and remote control, Roku have added a clear display, presets to your favourite playlists and radio stations and a full stereo speaker pair with subwoofer. There's even a SD/MMC card slot for loading music direct. Hottech TV like the SoundBridge so much that they've made a video about it; check it out below.
After the launch of the Fire TV, Amazon is ramping up on its content drive with two new pilots, including a dramatic comedy The Cosmopolitans, and a drama called Hand of God. The new shows, expected to arrive later in 2014 as part of Amazon Instant Video, feature casts including Adam Brody, Chloe Sevigny, Ron Perlman, and Dana Delany.
I’m a weak person. I know it. Every time a new gadget comes out, I find a way to justify buying it and I do just that – without even thinking.
On April 2, when Amazon unveiled the Fire TV, I fell into the same trap. I saw what I believed to be a compelling set-top box, and I didn’t waste time jumping over to Amazon.com, plunking down my $99, and having it shipped to me overnight. The reason? I need a set-top box in my bedroom, and what better device to scratch that itch than Amazon’s latest and greatest device?
Amazon's Fire TV launched last week to grand fanfare and plenty of promise, but as we discovered in our review the streaming box isn't quite perfect yet. Taking on Apple TV, Chromecast, and Roku with faster performance, easier search, and more compelling gaming makes a lot of sense, but some aspects of the Fire TV experience still need work. Head on past the cut to find the five tweaks that could make Fire TV the set-top box to beat.
Does the world need another streaming box? Amazon Fire TV argues “yes” and says speed, voice search that actually works, and proper gaming set it apart from the Apple TV, Roku 3, and Google Chromecast. As we’ve seen with the Kindle Fire HDX tablet range, Amazon can certainly build some impressive hardware when it puts its mind to it, but is the Fire TV quite ready for primetime? Read on for our full review.
In rolling out their Fire TV today, Amazon had an opportunity to take on some incumbent devices. Whether you think their media offerings are adequate or not, one thing is certain: they want to make a name in gaming. In that vein, amazon has introduced their gaming efforts today, hardware and all.