Roku Announces New Soundbar, Streaming Box, and OS Update
Roku just announced a new line of streaming devices and an updated operating system for existing users. The new products include an upgraded Roku Ultra with better WiFi connectivity and speed, as well as a new smart soundbar that also functions as a streaming device. Here’s everything you need to know about Roku’s new lineup, and how to update your Roku devices manually.
Roku just announced a new smart soundbar called the Streambar. This new smart soundbar hooks up to your TV and improves your sound and streaming capabilities. The Streambar features four smart speakers that can fill any room with Dolby Audio. Plus, you won’t have to buy a Roku streaming device to upgrade any TV into a smart TV.
This new two-in-one smart soundbar is only 14-inches long, so it will save you a lot of space under your TV. As a media player, the Streambar lets you stream content in 4K with HDR. And, as far as audio goes, the front speakers in this smart soundbar will boost speech clarity, while the side speakers will fill your room with sound. You can also add Roku’s wireless speakers and subwoofer to give your home theater a “true” surround sound experience.
The Streambar also comes with Bluetooth support, which means you can now pair it with your devices and cast media to your TV. It is compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant devices. You can pre-order the Streambar now for $129.99.
Roku also released a new version of the Roku Ultra, its premium streaming device. This new version comes with an improved quad-core processor that makes it faster at loading apps and channels. Plus, it has improved wireless technology that will expand its WiFi range by 50% over the previous model.
Because of its improved WiFi range, you will now have more options when choosing where to place the new Roku Ultra in your home. Now you can put this Roku player in rooms that are farther away from your router. However, just like the old Ultra, the new model will come with an Ethernet port that lets you connect it directly to your router for the best performance.
This 4K model is also the first standalone Roku streaming device to feature Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos sound, which is already present on some Roku TV models. Dolby Vision will be especially useful for those who have flatscreens that support this HDR feature. Roku also added Bluetooth support to the new Ultra.
The new Ultra also comes with a USB 3.0 port, which lets you stream your own media. And, just like the previous model, the new Roku Ultra features a lost remote finder feature, shortcut buttons that you can personalize, and private listening via the included headphones.
The new Roku Ultra is now available for pre-order. It is currently priced at $99.99
In addition to the new devices, Roku also announced a new update to the Roku platform. The latest version will come with wider device compatibilities and will be more helpful to users.
The new Roku update will bring AirPlay 2 and HomeKit support to Roku devices later this year. This means Apple users will be able to stream content directly from their iPhone, iPad, or Mac computer to their TV. Plus, Apple users will now be able to access the Roku Channel on their devices with a new app from the Apple App Store. This app is totally free, and it allows you to watch hundreds of movies and even live TV without signing up for a Roku subscription.
Finally, Roku users will also be able to use Peacock TV. This streaming service, which was blocked on all Roku devices until recently, offers 13,000 hours of free content, including hundreds of major motion pictures, thousands of hours of TV shows from NBC, live news, and more.
To update your Roku device, go to the home screen by pressing the Home button on your remote. Then press the left key to go to the menu and go up to Settings. Next, select System > System update > Check now.
Press the Home button on the Roku remote.
Then go to Settings. You can do this by pressing the left directional button on your remote and then pressing the up button once.
Next, select System. This will be just above Network.
Then select System update.
Next, select Check Now. Your device will start checking for a new update. If you see a message that says All software is up to date, you can go back to System restart and select Restart. If your Roku player still doesn’t update, you might have to wait a few days and try again.
Finally, select Update now. Depending on what kind of Roku device you have and your internet connection speed, this process might take a while. Your Roku device might also restart after the update is complete.
This new Roku update is being rolled out now, and it is expected to be available on select Roku devices in the coming weeks. If the new software is available, your device might download and install it automatically.