Michio Hasai Michio Hasai is a social strategist and car guy. Find him on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Roku released some major upgrades for its media streamers

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Roku is one of the pioneers of media streamers and even now has perhaps the best offerings on the market in terms of content availability through its platform. With more big names entering the market, not to mention Apple’s upcoming Apple TV successor, it’s about time Roku upgrade its current offerings. That’s why the company has added a slew of new features and hardware upgrades for its products. 

Roku announced major upgrades to its popular media streamers on Tuesday. The flagship Roku 3 ($100) gets an all-new remote control with an integrated mic that can be used for voice searches, and the new Roku 2 ($70) is now based on the same hardware as its more-expensive sibling. The new Roku 2’s remote, however, doesn’t support voice search, and it loses the headphone jack that it currently has (the Roku 3’s remote retains this feature, which is useful for private listening). The Roku 1 and the Roku Streaming Stick ($50 each) remain the same, apart from new software features that will be common to the entire lineup (and all other Roku players manufactured since 2011). Roku is slugging it out with Amazon, Apple, and Google to lead the media-streaming space, and consumers are reaping the benefits from this healthy competition. It’s unfortunate to see a product lose a feature—I’m referring to the headphone jack on the Roku 2’s remote, in this case—but the faster hardware under the hood should more than make up for that.

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Michio Hasai Michio Hasai is a social strategist and car guy. Find him on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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