Since the news broke on Friday, I’ve been obsessively diligently instructing my Roku Netflix box to check for the version 1.5 software update. While my serial number or region hasn’t yet been cleared for the upgrade and I’m stuck on 1.0.1, NewTeeVee’s unit has been hit with the refresh. The primary visible enhancement is the ability to stream Netflix’s small library of high definition video at 720p. But Roku’s also left us with a not-so-subtle teaser (as seen above):
This screen will become your launching pad for a number of great new channels that will begin to appear on your player in early 2009. In addition to the hugely popular Netflix channel, you’ll see movie channels, TV channels, web video and more!
For some time we’ve heard the Hulu rumors… but are these based on fact, or merely wishful thinking? YouTube seems like a natural fit. Regarding these “movie channels”, I wonder if Roku has worked a deal with someone like CinemaNow – which is on the now-shipping VuNow media box. Regardless of the new content sources and with the new HD streaming, it’s safe to say our economical $99 boxes are increasing in value.