Roku takes on Google's Chromecast with $50 Streaming Stick

Roku, the maker of an online video streaming set-top box and HDMI dongle, debuted a $50 version of its Streaking Stick that will begin shipping in mid-April. The device, which connects to the TV via an HDMI port, will compete with Google's $35 Chromecast stick in delivering streaming content to TVs and other devices.

Roku's Streaming Stick will let consumers stream more than 1,200 channels of movies, TV, music, news and sports. Of course, Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) is one of the most popular content channels available from Roku. The company also recently added new channels such as Showtime Anytime, Watch ESPN, Watch Disney Channel and YouTube.

The company's initial Streaming Stick, which it launched in 2012, was priced at $99 and bundled with Roku Ready devices (primarily TVs). Earlier this year, Roku said it had sold about 8 million Roku players.    

Roku announced at the Consumer Electronics Show in January that it was working with Chinese TV set makers to incorporate its software directly into TVs.

 For more:
- see this CNET article
- see this Re/Code article
- see this release

Related articles:
It's time to buy a Chromecast, but don't expect home-video nirvana
Roku TVs are coming as provider readies OEM co-marketing push
Roku executive: Cable operators want Roku's help
Roku gets $60M from Hearst, Fidelity, others

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