In short: Roku has now announced the latest additions to its streaming device lineup with the Roku Premiere and the Roku Premiere+. Both of which are designed to be ultra-affordable options while also providing consumers with the best picture quality possible thanks to the inclusion of 4K support. Roku has confirmed the new Roku Premiere is now available to pre-order from the company's website with units expected to begin shipping from October 7. The new Roku Premiere+ is currently not available to pre-order, but is expected to become available in October, at which point it will be sold exclusively through Walmart.
Background: Roku has always challenged the market by offering competitively-priced streaming devices, although the new Roku Premiere seems to be taking the price war to the next level. As in spite of offering a full Roku experience, including access to select free content via the company's Roku Channel service, and the 4K Ultra HD and 4K HDR support, this new streaming device costs just $39.99 in the US. Not only making it the cheapest 4K player to come from the company, but likely the cheapest 4K player on the market right now. The same can be said for the new Roku Premiere+ as this one is also expected to arrive priced at $49.99 with the main difference between the two models being the inclusion of a voice remote control.
Impact: The introduction of the Roku Premiere at $39.99 will make it even easier for more people to make the switch to a cord-cutting lifestyle, while also investing in a future proof device. As the included 4K support will mean that if and when a user upgrades their TV to a 4K TV, the Roku Premiere will already be ready to support the greater resolution. Making it a great option regardless of whether the user currently owns a 4K-compatible TV or not. Although the + model is arriving as a Walmart exclusive, this is unlikely to matter much as those who can live without the voice search features will be better off opting for the standard model, considering they are identical outside of the voice support. Furthermore, those who are after a more premium device in general will still want to consider the company's Roku Ultra which costs $99.99. A price that has now become even more value for money considering Roku also today confirmed it's now bundling a pair of "premium JBL headphones" in with the Ultra, while maintaining the same price point as before. The headphones are said to be priced at $39.95 on their own which essnetially means buyers are only paying around $60 for what is the company's flagship streaming player.