Roku is now offering the Roku SD ($79.99), Roku HD ($99.99) and the Roku HD-XR ($129.99). The Roku HD is the former player. I’m thinking their strategy seems a little crazy. You start offering the HD box. Most companies want to go HD along with consumers. But Roku launches a SD box. Seems pointless to go back in time. The Roku HD-XR features wireless N, which is nice. There is also a USB port that has no use right now. So for wireless N and a useless USB port you pay an extra $30. Still crazy. I’m sure they are trying to continue their success with the original box but things have changed. Netflix streaming is everywhere, Blu-Ray players, Xbox 360 and Windows Media Center. Soon on the PS3 and the Wii. I know they are offering additional services but they have no exclusives like when they got Netflix streaming. When you get a connected Blu-Ray player for under $200 that streams Netflix it is a better buy.
I think their best strategy would have been to update the box to the HD-XR features and keep the $99 price point. It wouldn’t confuse buyers with too many options and still keep the purchase in the impulse buy. I do have two Roku boxes but as I update other devices, that stream Netflix, the Roku boxes will be used less if at all.
What are your thoughts on the new Roku players?