Roku launches new HD, XD, and XDS media streamers

Roku just launched several upgraded streaming boxes as part of their popular media streamers family: Roku models HD, XD, XDS and simultaneously cutting prices as well. First of all, there is no standard definition only model anymore with the cheapest model, Roku HD selling for $59 and containing both wired and wireless network connections and capable of streaming video up to 720p. The next model is Roku XD selling for $79 and includes upgraded 1080p streaming support. Roku’s top of the line media streamer is the $99 Roku XDS which features a USB port for local streaming (not supported in firmware yet) and dual-channel 802.11n wireless adapter. All three models support HDMI and component outputs for the best video quality.

A first in the industry is the inclusion of a buffer that can hold about 10 seconds worth of video. This feature enables a sort of quick skip which might come in handy if you just missed a scene.

Currently Roku is offering the largest selection of media streaming sources among all media streamers manufacturers supporting the most polished Netflix client in the industry and additional clients for Amazon Video on Demand, Flixster, Vimeo, Pandora, Nasa, Flickr, Major League Baseball, Facebook Photos, etc, over 75 channels to choose from. The current capabilities and streaming  offerings position the new Roku boxes above the capabilities of recently announced Apple TV, especially 1080p streaming capabilities. And, in the future, Roku also promised to add DLNA support which will put them also in direct competition with other media streamer boxes as Western Digital WD TV Live Plus HD and Viewsonic VMP75.

You can currently pre-order the new Roku media streamers at Amazon and they’ll ship on October 7.

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