Parks: Roku leads the pack as 10% of broadband households buy streaming media devices in 2014

Ten percent of U.S. households bought a streaming media device in 2014 with Roku the leading choice, a survey by Parks Associates says.

The survey, an update to the analysts' streaming media device data, said that Roku was the leading brand with 29 percent of sales in the first three quarters followed by Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) Chromecast with 20 percent, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) TV with 17 percent and Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) Fire TV in fourth place with 10 percent. Google and Apple TV switched places between 2013 and 2014, the researchers said.

"Nearly 50 percent of video content that U.S. consumers watch on a TV set is non-linear, up from 38 percent in 2010 and it is already the majority for people 18-44," Barbara Kraus, director of research for Parks Associates, said in a press release. "The market is changing rapidly to account for these new digital media habits. Roku now offers a streaming stick and Amazon's Fire TV streaming stick leaves Apple as the only top player without a stick product in the streaming media device category."

The Parks results were a little different than a list of recommendations offered by Anick Jesdanun in an Associated Press story.

Jesdanun's top choice was the Amazon Fire stick because it has "voice search that works well" even though its content is limited to Amazon, Vevo, Showtime, Crackle and Hulu.

Roku came in second place because it "tends to give me the most problems with video and audio improperly syncing," Jesdanun wrote. Apple TV, a "solid choice and a great choice" for those with existing Apple accounts, came in third with the caveat "you can't download new apps as you can with the others." Google's Chromecast received honorable mention with "the experience and video quality (found to be) poor," the reporter wrote, suggesting that Google's $99 Nexus player was a better choice.

For more:
- Parks Associates has this press release
- see this Associated Press story

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