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Roku to make smart TVs

Roku is to partner with Chinese television manufacturers Hisense and TCL to launch a range of Roku-powered smart TVs.

The move means that consumers will be able to buy a television without having to buy a separate Roku device to connect to it.

“Roku TV removes all of the complicated layers and menus, and unnecessary features and settings that plague smart TVs today, and instead provides a Roku home screen that brings together all content sources,” Roku CEO Anthony Wood blogged.

“Just like Roku streaming players, Roku TV will have full access to the Roku Channel Store filled with more than 31,000 movies and 1,200 channels.”

Wood said that the Roku TVs will have full access to its Channel Store, with more than 31,000 movies and 1,200 channels.

The accompanying remote control will be simpler to use, with half the number of buttons found on normal remotes, and can be controlled via Android and iOS devices.

Roku TVs will also support the DIAL protocol used on Google’s Chromecast, which lets users throw music, video, photos and web pages from their handheld device to the TV screen.

Roku has signed up Hisense and TCL to produce its first TV sets. Six models will be launched in the autumn, three from each company in sizes ranging from 32-inches to 55-inches, although there’s no word on launch plans outside the UK.

It said the plans to introduce Roku-powered TVs would not mean the end of the lline for its set-top boxes, which include a white-label box manufactured for Sky under its NOW TV brand.

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