Roku Releases the Roku 3


After what seemed like an eternity Roku has released a brand new streaming box today.  The Roku 3 finally does away with all connections for old standard definition TV’s in this iteration making the box HD only.  It has HDMI, Ethernet, USB and a power port and that’s it.  The new box has beefed up hardware and improved searching on the device itself.  Roku promises that the user interface on the Roku 3 is the most responsive they have designed as well.  One last bit of news for the new Roku 3 is that the wireless remote now includes a headphone jack.  Plug a set of buds in and you can watch a movie at night without waking up the whole house.

The best part of this new Roku, to me, is the headphone jack on the remote.  I can see this especially useful at night, of course, but one thing I do a lot is watch and listen to live streaming video of podcasts.  Sometimes I don’t need to watch the video 100 percent of the time so with this remote I can start the video, put the earbuds on and do some cooking in the kitchen while I listen to the Roku.

The worst thing with the new box is doing away with the standard definition connection.  One trick a friend of mine uses with his Roku 2 XS is he’ll take it with him and tether to his phone in the hotel room instead of watching cable.  This can even be done in hotels who have not switched to high definition yet.  So even if you upgrade it might still be worth keeping your old one around.


Thew new Roku 3 replaces the old Roku 2 XS and is now available for 99 dollars.

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About the Author

Joel McLaughlin
Joel is a consultant in the IT field and is located in Columbus, OH. While he loves Linux and tends to use it more than anything else, he will stoop to running closed source if it is the best tool for the job. His techno passions are Linux, Android, netbooks, GPS, podcasting and Amateur Radio.

1 Comment on "Roku Releases the Roku 3"

  1. For me it doesn’t seem forever, but I think most people expected it last fall to hit the yearly upgrade loop. We have the Roku XDS (wife got it for me as a Christmas gift in 2010), and my problem thus far has been ‘why do I need to upgrade’?

    This isn’t a knock – it is actually a compliment! The system works great and has loads of features. The Roku 3 would give me … a better remote and faster response time? That is hard to swallow for a $100 upgrade. On the other hand we have to unplug the system every couple of months at this point when performance gets funky, so maybe a new one will be in our future.

    The thing with the ‘private viewing’ you mention is … that is why I have an iPad. And while I get that there is a huge price difference, Apple has sold more iPads in 2013 alone than the grand total of all Roku sales since 2009. So if people want to watch a movie privately, most folks have that covered. Nice feature, but probably not too many sales coming from it.

    My final concern is that many folks will look at the Roku as I do – a commodity device. It works, and the only way I will replace it is if it STOPS working. That doesn’t really help Roku grow as a company …

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