Image Source: PC Mag
The Roku TV OS 11.5 software upgrade includes, among other things, the addition of a new section on its streaming devices dubbed “The Buzz,” which will be filled with brief promotional content from entertainment partners. The objective is to give people another access point to find and view fresh TV series and films.
In terms of hardware, the business is introducing improved versions of the entry-level Roku Express streaming device and its wireless subwoofer for the 2022 Christmas shopping season (now called Roku Wireless Bass).
The What to Watch feature in Roku OS 11.5 will receive two “major changes” in addition to The Buzz: a Continue Along with changes to Roku Voice, increasing Bluetooth private listening to work with the Roku Ultra, Roku Streambar, and Roku Streambar Pro; adding categories to the Live TV Channel Guide; and redesigning the Roku Store area to make it “more visual.”
Roku devices will receive OS 11.5 “in the coming months,” according to the firm.
The Buzz, which will soon be available on the Roku home screen, will have a frequently updated collection of postings with brief material from streaming providers and entertainment companies. AMC+, Apple TV+, BET+, Crackle, Hallmark Movies Now, IGN, Plex, Popcornflix, Showtime, Starz, The CW, Tubi, Vevo, and Wondrium are some of The Buzz’s initial partners. The posts under The Buzz may include interviews, video snippets, pictures, trailers, and other types of content. In addition, users have the option to “like” the postings, save content for later viewing, follow users in The Buzz to see future posts, or instantly begin streaming the film or television program highlighted in the post.
The What to Watch section on the Roku home screen has a Continue Watching option that offers a single place to restart watching. Along with additional channels, Continue Watching will offer Netflix, HBO Max, Netflix, Paramount+, and the Roku Channel.
A Save List will soon be available on Roku’s What to Watch for easy access to previously bookmarked material. For example, on the information pages for movies and TV shows, users will notice a “Save” button that they may use to add that item to their list quickly. Prior to now, the Roku Channel and the Roku mobile app were the only options for a Save List.
Roku Voice will be able to see channel alternatives relevant to their voice search thanks to new visual on-screen features added by the OS 11.5 upgrade. Customers can then choose or express the choice they desire and begin streaming.
Three new categories—Recents, Favorites, and Subscribed—will be added to Roku’s Live TV Channel Guide so that users may save their favorite channels, go back to recently seen content, or access their subscribed channels directly from the Roku Channel. Additionally, it will show a variety of live TV genres, such as News, Sports, Movies, Entertainment, Kids, Crime, Music, and En Espanol. Each of these genres will automatically fill based on the live TV programming on the relevant Roku Channels. Additionally, Roku is integrating a special Live TV Channel “Guide” button on the remote mobile app, enabling users to view what is currently airing live on their TV quickly.
Roku has added the Roku Express player and Roku Wireless Bass to its array of devices, upholding its promise to offer the greatest streaming capabilities at competitive prices.
Roku TV upgrades to look out for
The new Roku Express has dual-band Wi-Fi (an improvement from 802.11b/g/n single-band Wi-Fi) and more storage for the same $30 price as the previous model (which the company says will result in faster channel start times). The streaming device, which does not support 4K Ultra HD, will be on pre-order on Monday at a list price of $29.99 on Roku.com, Walmart.com, and Amazon.com. It is anticipated to ship in mid-October. General availability starts on October 16 at Roku.com and at significant American retailers.
With the Roku Streambar, Roku Wireless Speakers, or Roku TV Wireless Soundbar, the newly created Roku Wireless Bass subwoofer is intended to function. It will go on sale on November 7 for $129.99 off the list; a Roku Streambar with Wireless Bass package will cost $250.