Roku has announced its own TV line. While Roku Smart TVs have existed for many years, these new TVs are the first ones branded as Roku TVs, instead of carrying the manufacturer’s branding with Roku’s operating system.
The new Roku-branded TVs will consist of two lines, a set of lower-end Roku Select TVs and a higher-end set of Roku Plus TVs. Roku isn’t providing any information about the specifics of the panel or backlight technology used in these TVs, so very little is known about what differentiates the two lines. One known differentiator is the remote, as the Roku Select TVs will come with Roku’s standard voice remote and the Roku Plus TVs will come with Roku’s Voice Remote Pro.
The line of new Roku TVs include models ranging from 24 inches up to 75 inches. All the usual sizes you expect to see will be available, including 32, 43, 55, and 65-inch models. Full pricing details haven’t been revealed, but the least expensive 24-inch TV will be $119 and the top-end 75-inch TV will be $999.
Much like Amazon’s own branded Fire TV Smart TVs released in 2021, Roku isn’t actually manufacturing these TVs in-house. Instead, Roku has partnered with a TV manufacturer for more control over the TVs and is adding its own branding as a result.
Roku claims its smart TV OS is the best-selling in the US, with a claim that one out of every three smart TVs sold is a Roku TV. Roku will need to proceed with caution with its new line of branded TVs to not upset its numerous partners. It’s unclear what will set Roku’s own TVs apart from Roku TVs made by third parties, but Roku VP Chris Larson said “our brand of televisions will allow us to test and introduce compelling features on our own product, which we will then make available for our full Roku TV OEM program” when speaking to The Vege’s Chris Welch.
That seems to be a similar strategy to Amazon’s own branded Fire TVs. The first sets announced in 2021 included unique features like hands-free Alexa capabilities that no other Fire TV Smart TV in the US offered. Those capabilities later trickled down to Fire TV Smart TVs made by Toshiba. Last year, Amazon revealed its new Omni QLED Fire TV Smart TVs which, again, feature capabilities never before seen on any third-party Fire TV Smart TV, such as presence sensors and the new Fire TV Ambient Experience.
These new Roku-branded smart TVs will be shipping this Spring. I expect we’ll learn more in the months to come about what makes them stand out among other budget smart TVs.