6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

First Look: The new Roku 3: overhauled interface, faster chip and private listening mode

About Video Transcript

First Look: The new Roku 3: overhauled interface, faster chip and private listening mode

2:43 /

The newly announced Roku 3 ($99) is the company's flagship streaming-media box, with a completely redesigned user interface, a faster processor and a neat new feature that lets you plug in headphones to the remote.

Hey, I'm Matthew Moskovciak from CNET and we're gonna take a quick look at the just announced Roku 3. This is Roku's new flagship streaming media box and it's shipping starting today for $99. What's most exciting about the new box is the completely overhauled user interface. It's a totally new look for Roku and it's a big improvement. Gone as the old filmstrip look replaced with a menu bar and a grid of channels. The new layout lets you see a lot more channels at once, making it much faster to find exactly what you're looking for. Roku's channel store is also now integrated right into the main menu. Instead of having to load a whole separate interface which took forever on the old Roku boxes. Overall, just about everything feels better and faster on the new interface and the best part, Roku's rolling out this new look to all current gen Roku boxes in April. The box itself has a slightly updated look with an even glossier finish than before and new rounded edges on the side. You'll also notice it's a little bit heavier than the old boxes and Roku added that weigh on purpose to help the Roku 3 from getting pulled by heavy HDMI cables. Inside it has a new processor that's claimed to be five times faster than the Roku 2 XS's chip. Now, some have speculated that maybe a faster chip would finally allow Roku to add YouTube to its channel store but for whatever reason that's still not the case so, there's no YouTube on Roku 3. The other internal improvement is dual band WiFi, which is a nice upgrade that Roku fans have had on their wishlist for a while. Around back, you'll find just an HDMI output and Ethernet jack, a micro SD card slot and a power port, plus there's also a USB port on the side. There's no more analog video output on the Roku 3. So, if you still need an analog connection, you'll need to step down to another model. Roku has also added one more neat feature to the Roku 3 and that's the private listening mode. Plug in some headphones to the jack on the side of the remote and you can listen to anything you're streaming on your Roku box. Your TV's line is automatically muted and you can control the headphone volume using the rocker on the side. It's a really smart edition of Roku's feature set and they're even including a pair of earbuds in the box. So, all together, the new Roku 3 feels like a very polished update to a series of streaming boxes that were already excellent. I'm gonna continue testing the new box and the updated interface. To check back for a full review soon to see how it stacks up to its main competitor, the Apple TV. I'm Matthew Moskovciak and that was a quick look at the new Roku 3.

New releases

SkyBell's smart buzzer puts outdoor security into focus
2:34 January 29, 2015
It isn't perfect, but this $200 Wi-Fi-enabled video bell will do more to protect your front door.
Play video
Quickly turn off the iPhone flashlight
0:49 January 29, 2015
Donald Bell shows you an alternative, faster way to switch off your iPhone's flashlight feature.
Play video
Fitbit Charge HR folds heart rate into its everyday fitness band
1:46 January 29, 2015
All-day heart rate tracking, and it doesn't cost much more than the old Fitbit Charge. The question is, do you need it?
Play video
This high-concept LED gets high marks
2:00 January 29, 2015
Don't let the hollow look fool you -- Green Creative's BR30 Cloud LED is a solid performer.
Play video
Super Bowl a no-drone zone, while ads swarm on social
2:57 January 29, 2015
Facebook will target users with real-time ads during the biggame and the FAA warns against flying drones near the stadium on Sunday....
Play video
What's new on Netflix and Amazon for February 2015
2:09 January 29, 2015
Find out what you should add to your watch list because these videos are either brand new or going offline very soon.
Play video
Racer by day, getaway driver by night: Meet Roy James
14:55 January 29, 2015
Roy "The Weasel" James was a true racing driver but to fund his habit he turned to a life of crime. Find out how he outran the Fuzz...
Play video
Induction meets sous vide in a cooker you can actually afford
2:04 January 28, 2015
Due on Indiegogo next month, the Paragon Induction Cooktop from GE's FirstBuild initiative might be the first must-own kitchen gadget...
Play video