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Roku Says Netflix Box Can Offer HD Streams

22 Dec, 2008 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Roku, manufacturer of Netflix’s proprietary $99 digital set-top box, said it has developed technology that allows for streaming of high-definition content via a broadband connection.

Saratoga, Calif.-based Roku said advances in compression technology now allow for distribution of HD content streams on an average broadband connection. The company said it would deliver the software early next year as an upgrade to all Roku players without charge.

The privately held company said additional third-party suppliers of HD content for the Netflix box are expected in 2009.

Richard Doherty, research director for The Envisioneering Group in Long Island, N.Y., believes the Roku box is the top consumer electronics device in 2008, considering its price, functionality and ease-of-use.

“No other HD device delivers as diverse a catalog of HD entertainment along with flexible HDTV connections and incomparable price-value as Roku,” Doherty said. “More and more HD video programming is instantly available, making Roku even more valuable over time than many expensive [digital video recorders] and leased services.”

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