Roku refreshes their set-top boxes with 1080p and USB playback, embarrasses the AppleTV – New Tech Gadgets & Electronic Devices

Right before Cupertino’s new $99 AppleTV announcement earlier this month, set-top box maker Roku dropped the price of their devices… and boy, are we glad they did, because with today’s refresh of their .XD and XDS players, Roku is easily now offering the best bang for the buck in set-top boxes out there.

The XD is the new mid-range Roku model, costing $80, and has been updated with 802.11n WiFi as well as 1080p playback. Got that? For 20 bucks less than an AppleTV, you can get higher definition playback than what Apple is offering on a box imbued with their fancy A4 CPU.

If you’re willing to pay the price of an AppleTv, though, or $99, you get even more: not only does the Roku XDS get the same 1080p and Wireless N functionality as its little brother, but it also gains component video out, optical audio out and a USB port through which you can play locally stored music, photos and videos. The USB port won’t go “live” until an update in November, but that’s still really impressive.

Finally, Roku is boasting that the XD and XDS models are also getting an industry first software feature in set-top boxes: the ability to skip back in a video in seven second increments without having to wait for the film to buffer again. If you say so!

Either way, Roku’s just successfully proven that Apple’s “hobby device,” the AppleTV, is still a hobby. For the same price, you can get a much, much more capable set-top box.

Read more at Roku

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About rayrr

10 years as a NetWork Administrator in the Virginia Beach, Virginia Area. 11 years in the San Diego, California area. Went back to Manila Philippines to relax and rest away from the rat race. View all posts by rayrr

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