The stick offers the Roku user interface with shortcuts to movies, TV shows, news, the Roku Channel Store, Roku Search and more. Those who desire a mobile experience can use their smartphone or tablet (along with the free Roku apps for Android and iOS devices) to browse and select channels to stream.
They can also cast Netflix, YouTube and personal media from their devices to their TVs. Over time Roku will add additional mobile features such as the ability to cast content from a computer to the TV.
“The new Roku Streaming Stick gives consumers more choice for streaming entertainment to the TV than any other device,” said Jim Funk, senior vice president of product management at Roku.
“Consumers want a ton of entertainment, an easy way to search for movies and TV shows, and options to control the experience with a remote or mobile device. This new Roku Streaming Stick brings all that and more – and in a tiny form factor.”
Once plugged in, the Roku Streaming Stick lets consumers start streaming from more than 1,200 channels in the US, and more than 750 channels in Canada, the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
Roku’s original streaming stick, the Roku Streaming Stick (Roku Ready version), which the company launched in 2012, will be bundled at retail with Roku Ready devices. In 2013, Roku certified 60 different products from 14 partners who shipped more than 2.5 million Roku Ready devices, most of which were televisions. There are currently 20 Roku Ready partners in the programme.
The new Roku Streaming Stick (HDMI version) has a suggested retail price of $49.99 in the US, and £49.99 in the UK and in the Republic of Ireland, and will be available in April, both online and in stores.