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Thursday, February 29, 2024

Roku broadcasts new Professional lineup of TVs coming this spring

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Roku introduced its first self-branded TVs at CES last year, and as anticipated, the primary emphasis was on funds pricing and offering a stable, reliable product. Above all else, the Roku Choose and Plus Sequence TVs had been a automobile for getting Roku’s software program into much more properties. However the first-party Roku TVs fell a bit flat when it comes to image high quality in comparison with units from TCL, Hisense, and different TV makers that play in the identical pricing territory. They had been superb however unexceptional.

For 2024, Roku hopes to step up its video chops with a brand new Professional lineup of TVs on account of ship later this 12 months. The Roku Professional TVs will are available in 55-inch, 65-inch, and 75-inch sizes for “retail costs beneath $1,500.” They’ll characteristic Mini LED native dimming for improved distinction and deeper blacks. The corporate additionally says it’ll provide a novel mount for these fashions “that marries each design and performance” and permits the Roku Professional units to relaxation flat towards the wall.

The Roku Professional TVs will embrace Mini LED backlighting for a lot better distinction.
Picture: Roku

As is changing into a theme this 12 months, Roku says these TVs can even leverage AI to mechanically modify image and audio settings based mostly on the precise content material you’re viewing. Roku’s analysis reveals that over 90 p.c of consumers by no means change their image modes in any respect, so now the corporate goes to deal with that obligation itself. A brand new Good Image characteristic will detect the content material on-screen and mechanically optimize the picture settings to make it look its greatest. (Roku Good Image can even be coming to third-party Roku TVs this 12 months; it’s not simply restricted to Roku’s personal {hardware}.)

Roku’s prospects have streamed billions of hours’ value of content material on the platform, and the corporate says this has given it a wealth of information and experience with regards to video processing, bit price optimization, and so forth. When you’re questioning about movement smoothing, it’s on by default, however every time Roku Good Image detects cinematic content material it’ll flip off the smoothing mechanically.

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Like its first wave of TVs, the Roku Professional units are designed in-house however manufactured by an OEM accomplice. There are solely so many firms churning out panels and TV {hardware} these days, so I’m certain Roku’s accomplice will rapidly be recognized as soon as the TVs begin transport within the spring. Sadly, Roku is staying fairly tight-lipped about different {hardware} options and the tech specs till nearer to launch. Can they do 120Hz and VRR? One would hope so with the “Professional” label, however we’ll have to attend a pair extra months to seek out out the entire story.

My largest query is how the Roku Professional TVs will stack up towards the first OLED Roku TV, made by Sharp, that was introduced in November. However the OLED comes at a premium, with the 55-inch mannequin beginning at $1,500. And when you’re spending greater than that, are you continue to buying Roku TVs within the first place?

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