Roku's Got Some New Low-Cost 4K Players That You Probably Can't Buy

By Tom Pritchard on at

Roku's relationship with the UK is a little bit turbulent. By that I mean the company generally chooses to leave us off the release calendar, leaving a few years between product launches. Last year the company upgraded its local offering by releasing the low-cost Express and 4K streaming stick here, but none of the other fancy players it has on sale in the US. The company just announced those players will be getting a refresh, and in typical Roku fashion it's mentioned nothing about a UK launch.

But before we get to complaining about our lack of access, let's take a look at what the two new devices have to offer. The cheapest device on offer is a new Roku Premiere, which promises to offer both 4K and HDR content for the low-low price of $39.99 (£30.43, though we all know it'd probably end up being £40). That's notable because it's cheaper than other 4K HDR streaming devices on the market, including Roku's own streaming stick ($79.99) and the Amazon Fire TV dongle ($69.99). So with the price of 4K TVs coming down, Roku's gone and reduced the cost of actually accessing the content. Beyond rubbish Smart TV apps, anyway.

The Premiere+, which costs $49.99, offers the same, but comes packing a voice remote with TV power and volume control - much like the 4K streaming stick. Both devices come packing a quad-core processor, 802.11 (b/g/n) Wi-Fi, plus Dolby and DTS Digital Surround sound. To top it all off, all the hardware has been squeezed down into a smaller form factor than the previous Premiere boxes, with a similar scale to the Roku Express. It's not quite the same as a streaming stick, but it's still pretty discreet, and even includes the right kind of HDMI cable in the box.

Roku's top-tier Ultra box isn't going anywhere either, but the company has decided to throw some JBL headphones into the box, while retaining the $99.99 pricetag.

The new stuff is currently available to pre-order in the US, ready for an 8th October release date, and as previously mentioned there's no official word on whether these devices will be coming to the UK. I've emailed to double check, and see if there are any secret plans, but I wouldn't get my hopes up if I were you. So get ready to import those devices, if you really must have one of these.