Roku to launch plug-in Smart TV device
Roku Streaming Stick compatible with all MHL-enabled HDMI ports
TV and game streaming firm Roku is launching a wireless device that turns a normal television into a Smart TV without the need for a set-top box.
The device is equivalent in size to a USB flash drive, and contains a Wi-Fi processor, internal memory and the software necessary to stream Roku's entertainment content.
The Roku Streaming Stick is compatible with MHL-enabled HDMI ports, it requires no cables or external power, and will provide the 400 channels currently available through Roku's set-top boxes.
Roku believes the Streaming Stick will eradicate the necessity of upgrading Smart TV hardware to keep pace with the evolution of its software. The HDMI ports required by the device have already been adopted by almost 100 hardware manufacturers, including Sony, Samsung, Nokia and Toshiba.
"The Roku platform has been extremely successful as a standalone streaming device," said founder and CEO Anthony Wood in a statement. "Extending the Roku streaming experience through the Roku Streaming Stick to Smart TVs is a natural next step for the market."
The Roku Streaming Stick will be released in the second half of 2012.