Roku unveils Chromecast rival: Roku Streaming Stick

Roku Streaming Stick

Chromecast, the $35 streaming stick that is both cheap and valuable was extremely successful. One of the reasons for this was it’s low barrier for entry: only $35. At that kind of price, you just buy it without thinking twice. It obviously is giving some tough competition to Roku which is priced in the $100 segment.

Roku has felt the urge to unleash a competetitor and dominate the low end market. So Roku has unveiled the Roku streaming stick which will retail for $49 which is still higher than the Chromecast’s rock bottom $35 price.

When Chromecast first released, you couldn’t do much on it. Google has already opened the SDK for developers but still there are few apps for it. Google has also added screen mirroring to Chromecast in the latest update. But Roku looks to be more versatile with access to more than 1200 apps at launch. Yeah, that is much more than the Chromecast’s number of apps EVEN months after it’s launch.

The streaming stick will go directly into your TV’s HDMI port making it less cluttered than having a full blown box.

Yeah, it will have all the streaming features you expect from a Roku product.

Photo: Josh Valcarcel/WIRED

It will ship with a RF remote like other boxes in the Roku line.

But this isn’t Roku’s first foray into the streaming stick market, it already had a streaming stick two years ago. But this one is cheaper ($49 vs $99 ), offers the same features and then some more and doesn’t need a TV to be Roku Ready with special ‘MHL enhanced HDMI port’.

Streaming sticks are the new fad right now and offer to turn your TV smarter than a smart TV but at a fraction of the cost.

Although the Roku is $15 more than the Chromecast, it is still offers more value as it is much more versatile.

It is up for preorder on Amazon, BestBuy, Walmart and Staples and will hit the ole brick and mortar stores starting this April. At a price of $49, it seems like a pretty good deal.

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