Hisense Roku TV

Roku has a pretty dominant position in the United States, thanks to its low-cost streaming players (the sticks and the like), and its affordable Roku TVs from partners like TCL. In fact, it's estimated that one out of every three smart TVs sold in the U.S. is running the Roku operating system. Now it's taking aim at Europe — where Samsung's Tiezen OS has led and Roku has plodded along at 4 percent or so — with its first Roku TV for the continent announced at the IFA conference in Berlin.

Chinese manufacturer Hisense is on board as the initial partner.

From Roku CEO Andy Wood, who gave a keynote address today at IFA:

"While consumers love Roku TV's simplicity and advance features, TV manufacturers benefit from the low manufacturing cost, a variety of technology options, and support from Roku. The ability to quickly bring to market a leading smart TV experience that is regularly updated by Roku and is packed with entertainment gives TV manufacturers an edge in the competitive TV business," said Roku CEO and Founder Anthony Wood. "We are pleased to bring the Roku TV licensing program to Europe and look forward to the first Hisense Roku TVs in market this year."

Details about the initial Hisense Roku TV were not immediately available, except to say that versions ranging up to 65 inches would be available at some point in the fourth quarter. Pricing was not announced.

But if our time with other Roku TVs is any indication, Europe is in for what basically is the same Roku experience you get from one of this players, only it's built into the TV itself and also includes a basic interface for antenna. You'll have access to whatever online services are available in your region. The real differentiation comes in the hardware itself. Just this year we've seen TCL announce new micro-LED panels in the upcoming 8-Series sets, which will more directly take on Samsung's QLED displays. (And at a less expensive price, at that.) But while the visual experience may vary somewhat, the overall experience should be fairly similar.

More: TCL's latest Roku TVs may be the ones to beat this year

Roku Expands Roku TV Licensing Program into Europe

Enabling TV Manufacturers to Easily Build, Low-Cost Smart TVs that Consumers and Retailers Love; Hisense to Ship First Roku TVs for the UK market this Fall

IFA, BERLIN – Sept. 7, 2019 – Roku Inc. (NASDAQ: ROKU) today announced it is further expanding the Roku TV™ licensing program into Europe. Hisense is the first European Roku TV partner and is expected to launch Roku TV models in the UK in Q4. Hisense Roku TV models combine Roku's intuitive and easy-to-use operating system including thousands of streaming channels; with Hisense's picture and screen technologies delivering 4K Ultra HD resolution and enhanced detail and contrast levels of HDR. Showcased this week at IFA, a world-leading consumer tech show in Berlin, attendees can see the first Hisense Roku TV for Europe in Roku's Booth #234, Hall 26 and Hisense's Booth #201, Hall 6.2.

TV manufacturers can license Roku TV reference designs and use the Roku OS to quickly build world-class smart TVs. Roku TV was first introduced at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show, and today 100+ models are available from 10+ brands in North America. Roku estimates that in the first half of 2019 more than one-in-three smart TVs sold in the U.S. were Roku TVs, making the Roku OS the #1 selling smart TV OS in the U.S.

"While consumers love Roku TV's simplicity and advance features, TV manufacturers benefit from the low manufacturing cost, a variety of technology options, and support from Roku. The ability to quickly bring to market a leading smart TV experience that is regularly updated by Roku and is packed with entertainment gives TV manufacturers an edge in the competitive TV business," said Roku CEO and Founder Anthony Wood. "We are pleased to bring the Roku TV licensing program to Europe and look forward to the first Hisense Roku TVs in market this year."

Simple Entertainment Experience for Consumers

Roku TV is a better smart TV. Roku TV removes the complicated layers and menus, and unnecessary features and settings that plague smart TVs today. Instead, Roku TVs feature a Roku home screen that showcases all available content sources in one place making it easy to watch live programming, stream a movie or TV show, or listen to a song in just seconds. Just like Roku streaming players, Roku TVs have full access to the Roku Channel Store filled with thousands of streaming channels that offer access to 150,000 movies and TV shows as well as live sports news, music, kids, food, science, tech, fitness, foreign language and other programming. Roku TV models can be controlled with either an included simple TV remote or with the Roku mobile app for Android and iOS devices. With the Roku mobile app consumers can stream entertainment to their Roku TV, use their voice to search for movies and TV shows, and enjoy private listening of TV audio with headphones.

Maintenance-Free, Low-Cost Smart TV Platform for Manufacturers

TV manufacturers receive the Roku TV reference platform complete with TV and remote control designs as well as technical support to manufacture and maintain the best TV experience. Meanwhile, Roku manages the entire software ecosystem for all Roku TVs which includes securing and updating streaming channels and providing frequent software updates to deliver new features and experience enhancements.

Manufacturers interested in partnering with Roku can email [email protected]

Availability and Pricing

Hisense Roku TV models are expected to bring an affordable yet enhanced viewing experience to UK consumers. Hisense Roku TV models are expected to be available for purchase in the UK in Q4 in sizes ranging up to 65 inches. Pricing and other details will be announced by Hisense later this year.