Interactive TV News Round-Up (VII): Roku, HBO, Sling Media, TiVo

--Roku Launches $49.99 Streaming Player
--HBO's "TV Everywhere" Service, HBO Go, to Launch on Roku
--Sling Media Launches SlingPlayer for Android Tablets
--TiVo Announces Availability of its $500 Premiere Elite DVR

Because the [itvt] editorial team has been working on TVOT NYC Intensive 2011, we are covering stories in this issue in round-up/summary format.

  • OTT TV specialist, Roku, has launched a $49.99 streaming player, called the Roku LT. "The Roku LT streams 720p high‐definition video and features built‐in wireless," the company states in its press materials. "It will be available from, and in retail stores nationwide beginning in early November. The Roku LT complements the Roku 2 family of streaming players which was introduced in late July. The Roku 2 family is unique in that it features casual gaming as well as streaming video and music. Roku 2 is available in three models--Roku 2 HD ($59.99), Roku 2 XD ($79.99) and Roku 2 XS ($99.99)--all feature Bluetooth and a microSD card slot. The flagship Roku 2 XS model comes standard with the Bluetooth‐enabled Roku Game Remote with motion control for games like Angry Birds." Said Roku CEO, Anthony Wood: "The Roku LT opens up streaming to more people by lowering the cost of entry in these difficult economic times. With a $49 price and selection of more than 300 channels we expect the Roku LT will be everyone's favorite Holiday device."
  • In other Roku news: The company has secured a deal with HBO to offer the latter's HBO Go "TV Everywhere" service on its platform. "With HBO Go on Roku, consumers will be able to instantly access more than 1,400 titles, including every episode of every season of the best HBO shows--streamed to their TV's for convenient, on‐demand viewing from the comfort of home.," Roku states in its press materials. "Expected to be available on all Roku streaming players at the end of October, HBO Go will join Roku's large and growing collection of entertainment channels. HBO Go is available at no additional cost to HBO customers who subscribe through a participating television provider."
  • EchoStar-owned Sling Media has launched a version of its SlingPlayer TV placeshifting software for Android (3.0 and above) tablets. "Available for purchase on the Android Market, the application lets Slingbox owners extend their living-room TV experience to their tablets and takes advantage of the higher performance, screen resolutions and video quality the latest Android devices can deliver," the company states in its press materials. "New to this release of SlingPlayer is a revamped program guide that makes it easy to browse content choices while continuing to watch TV. Familiar custom on-screen remote controls closely mimic the same experience the user has from the couch at home." SlingPlayer for Android Tablets is priced at $29.99.
  • TiVo has announced the availability of its new, $500 high-end DVR, the TiVo Premiere Elite (note: the company unveiled the new box last month--see the article published on, September 7th). "The new product, available today, is TiVo's first and only retail DVR with four tuners, allowing for simultaneous recording of four different shows while viewing a fifth recorded program," the company states in its press materials. "Plus, its industry-leading two-terabyte hard drive allows for up to 300 hours of recorded HD programming; that's two times more recording space than current offerings...The TiVo Premiere Elite is intended for use with digital cable systems only and does not work with analog cable or over-the-air antennas. With the added distinction as a THX Certified DVR, the TiVo Premiere Elite offers a high-end solution to get the most out of a customer's high-definition television and cable subscription. It maintains TiVo's gold-standard, easy-to-navigate user interface, integrating Web entertainment from Netflix, Pandora, Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant Video and YouTube, bringing Brilliant TV to life."
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