Roku's first self-made TVs hit Best Buy stores today
They range from basic sets to more advanced TVs with QLED and Dolby Vision.
At CES, Roku announced that it'll finally be building its own Roku TVs, in addition to working with partners like TCL and Hisense. Starting today, you can pick up one of those sets at Best Buy's stores and website. Roku is offering two series of TVs, both of which are powered by its streaming platform: Roku Select sets ranging from 24 to 75-inches, and Roku Plus televisions coming in at 55-, 65-, and 75-inches.
We're still waiting for a full pricing breakdown, but Roku says Select TVs will start at $149 (with a potential drop to $120 this summer), and the Plus models will start below $500. That's in-line with similar offerings from TCL and other partners. At CES, Roku's VP of retail strategy, Chris Larson, said the company is aiming to deliver features partners don't always include, like voice-enabled remotes, as well as automatic brightness adjustment (on the Premiere sets).
Roku isn't saying much about its Select TVs, perhaps because there's not much to say. They'll include HD and 4K models (there's no need to go 4K on very small TVs, after all), as well as its standard voice remote. Like most bargain TVs, they'll also rely on full-array backlights with no local dimming — so expect to see gray-like blacks and spotty lighting. The Roku Plus sets are far more advanced: They'll include QLED panels, local backlight dimming for better contrast, 4K Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos-approved speakers. They'll also get Roku's rechargeable voice remote.
While Roku told us that it's not trying to compete with its longtime partners, it'll be interesting to see how those companies respond. By making voice remotes standard, perhaps TCL and others will follow suit. The company also unveiled a Roku OS update today, which will include local news and support for premium subscriptions on Roku's live channel guide.
Correction (3/12/23): A previous version of this story said Roku's Select TVs offered edge-lit backlights. Instead, they have full array backlights without local dimming support.