Television aggregator Roku Inc (ROKU.O) said on Monday it would launch its streaming players in Germany later this year, its second big European rollout, seeking to capitalize on a pandemic-driven shift towards watching more video on demand.
Roku will offer content from local partners Seven.One Entertainment Group (PSMGn.DE), RTL Deutschland and Comcast Corp’s (CMCSA.O) Sky Deutschland, as well as big names Netflix Inc (NFLX.O), Amazon.com Inc’s (AMZN.O) Amazon Prime and Walt Disney Co’s (DIS.N) Disney+.
San Jose, California-based Roku started in 2008 by marketing streaming players before developing a proprietary operating system that, it says, offers a smooth and easy interface for choosing what to watch on TV.
How Roku TV works
Roku is the company that pioneered streaming for the TV. Roku streaming players “Aware film stream” are a more convenient and cost effective way to watch TV. Just plug it into your TV, connect to the internet, set up a Roku account, and start streaming your favourites.
Roku devices are simple to set-up and easy-to-use. They come with a simple remote, and powerful features like Roku Search which makes it effortless to find what you want to watch. Roku devices give you access to 4,000+ free and paid channels, so you can stream almost anything:
Tons of FREE content,
on channels like TV Player, Deezer, BBC Sports, Sky News and Red Bull TV.
on channels like On BBC iPlayer, All 4, ITV Hub, Demand 5 and STV Player.
on channels like Box Plus, Deezer, VEVO and TuneIn.
Blockbuster movies, original content and the latest TV Shows,
on channels like Netflix, Amazon Video, NOW TV, Rakuten TV, Sky Store and Apple TV.
Roku TV will offer streaming content for its fans, the following streaming movies are provided by Roku TV in Germany:
- After Love film in stream
- Free Guy film stream
- Der menschliche Faktor film stream
- Nebenan film stream
In Germany, Roku would compete with rivals including the Amazon Fire TV stick and Google Chromecast.
Building on its core U.S. franchise, Roku entered the UK market two years ago as a software partner for smart TV maker Hisense, but is taking a different approach in Germany by going in first with its plug-in player.
“There is a very big secular shift to streaming – that’s a trend that was accelerated last year by the pandemic,” Arthur van Rest, the executive leading Roku’s international expansion, told Reuters in an interview.
Instead of passively consuming scheduled programming, viewers increasingly watch what they want, when they want to. “TV and the way that it’s being consumed are shifting dramatically – and we are right at the heart of that,” he added.
Roku’s focus on offering the best platform for viewing video on demand means, said van Rest, that it expects to displace existing smart TVs as the software installed by the manufacturer fails to keep pace.
At the same time, offering an attractive interface is interesting both for publishers and advertisers as they seek to tap in to a German market where nearly half of households already have one or more subscription video deals.
Details on pricing of its streaming players and its retail distribution partners will follow, Roku said. It sells its streaming player for 29.99 pounds ($41.48) in Britain, with users paying for subscription channels like Netflix on top.