Roku.com's HTML code is apparently a GPS map guiding the media player vendor to the continental European market, according to a report in GigaOM, which said the website code "hints of an upcoming presence in Germany and Spain."
A Roku spokesperson told GigaOM that there were no announced plans about an international expansion even though Roku Web developers apparently added Germany and Spain to the site's source code, which the report displayed.
It's not as if Roku hasn't stepped out before. After starting in the United States, the company moved to the U.K. and Ireland in January and Canada in April. Of course this all happened after Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) launched its service in those markets and now Netflix seems to be pulling back on international expansion as it tries to figure out what to do about its U.S. business.
A Netflix spokesperson muddied the waters even more by telling GigaOM's Janko Roettgers that Netflix "will expand to another international market in Q4 of this year but that further details haven't been announced yet."
In fact, it appears that "announced" could be the key word in all of this. Roku hasn't announced anything but its background work appears to show something going on. Netflix hasn't announced anything, but it may all wash out later in July when the company announces second quarter earnings that may prove to be better than originally anticipated. If that's the case, and Netflix invades Europe, Roku could be close behind.
Or, it could be that Roku is moving away from Netflix--which has in the past played an on again-off again game with its international business--and will announce that it's binding itself with other partners such as Amazon.com's (Nasdaq: AMZN) expanding Lovefilm or Hulu which last year was rumored to be headed to Germany.
- see the GigaOM story
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