Roku gets Play Movies & TV to duel with Android TV

Roku was on the forefront of making low-cost, reliable streaming devices for your living room, bedroom, or anywhere else you might have a TV and a shelf. They held sway until the Chromecast came in and knocked them off their low-cost pedestal, too. Unrelenting, Roku took steps to make sure we used their service, even letting us stream pics and video from our Android devices. Now they're taking another step closer to Google, and will start offering up Play Movies & TV via your Roku.

As much as we enjoy Chromecast, Roku still holds a powerful edge on the streaming competition. Until now, Google wasn't keen on offering up Play Movies & TV outside of Android.

We quietly hoped Google would democratize their service at some point, but Android TV seemed like the existing Android footprint would only get larger.

Happily, it hasn't, and the visual impact suggests Play Movies & TV is simply becoming standard on all fronts. The Roku edition of Play Movies & TV looks just like the newest Chromecast version to us, which should also be the same for Android TV once it starts coming to users' shelves.

The Roku version also gives you that second-screen functionality you'll find on the Chromecast version, just on the same screen you're watching the movie. Pause a film, and get info on the actors on-screen. That comes in really handy when you can't put a face to a name, or are trying to win a bet.

If you sign up for a Play Movies & TV account, you'll also get an HD copy of X-Men. Though they don't specifically say as much, it reads like you'll need a new account, so signing in with your existing Play account may not get you that free movie.

Source: Roku