Roku Startup Purchase Adds To Smart Speaker Rumors

Without much attention drawn, Roku acquired a Denmark-based company, Dynastorm, back in September of this year, according to a new report out of Variety. The information on this originally came from filings seen by the publication which although did not explicitly state Dynastrom was the company purchased, Roku did reportedly confirmed the purchase to Variety following the initial filings having been reported on. Further adding how Daystrom will continue to operate in Denmark and largely as an independent entity.

However, what makes this acquisition more interesting is that Dynastrom is understood to be an audio-focused company who specializes in a multi-room technology. In particular, the startup works on software which can be integrated into products like speakers to provide a connected audio experience within the home. Which has led to speculation now that Roku may be preparing to enter the connected audio and/or smart home market as well. What has further compounded the speculation is another report which emerged back in September of this year, and also originally from Variety.

That report drew on recent hires by Roku to suggest the company is likely working on, or planning to develop, voice command-enabled smart speakers. This was based on some of the new open positions focusing on audio-related software, with other vacancies aimed more towards voice control features. When taken together, the hiring push in general seemed to suggest that the company could be preparing some sort of voice-controlled audio-based product. For example, something which could be positioned as a direct competitor, and offering similar functionality, to Amazon Echo or Google Home. Of course, that initial speculation came through before the most recent news of the acquisition of a company which happens to focus on connecting such speakers in a multi-room manner. Again, in a similar way to how both Amazon Echo and Google Home do. Therefore, with the different threads of information now coming through and all occurring within the same short time-frame (the acquisition seems to have occurred during the same month Roku was noted listing the job vacancies) has now further added to the speculation that at least one voice-controlled audio-based product will arrive from Roku in the future.

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John Anon

Editor-in-Chief
John has been writing about and reviewing tech products since 2014 after making the transition from writing about and reviewing airlines. With a background in Psychology, John has a particular interest in the science and future of the industry. Besides adopting the Managing Editor role at AH John also covers much of the news surrounding audio and visual tech, including cord-cutting, the state of Pay-TV, and Android TV. Contact him at [email protected]
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