The new whole-home entertainment licensing program will enable manufacturers to build soundbars and smart speakers, surround sound, and multiroom audio systems that use Roku Connect software to work together as a home entertainment network.
Created by TCL, the largest distributor of Roku TV sticks in the United States, the TCL Roku Smart Soundbar was revealed at the Consumer Electronics Show 2018 at Las Vegas and is slated to be available late 2018.
TCL Roku TV will be debuting in North America this year. "As we continue to innovate, we're able to produce televisions engineered with features that maximize technologies which already exist in our sets like Dolby Vision and the Roku OS to deliver outstanding performance at an incredible value".
Stepping into the more traditional territory, the C6 series of TVs all feature Android TV, 4K HDR displays and a Harman Kardon audio system with an integrated Circular soundbar at the base of the screen.
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The TCL Roku Soundbar will be the first of the firm's Alto lineup of audio products. The Roku OS allows it to stream and access to millions of movies and TV shows through a simple user interface. "We envision a broader Roku ecosystem where the TV is the centre of the home entertainment experience making Roku TV even more desirable. We're doubling down on our partnership with Roku to offer our customers an easy way to add premium sound and enhanced functionality to a TCL Roku TV", said Chris Larson, Senior Vice President, TCL.
TCL also announced the 5 series of Roku TVs, which lack local dimming but do offer most of the 6-series other picture quality extras.
"Furthermore, the 5-Series TVs come packed with 240 Natural Motion technology for smooth action (55", 65" only), Wide Color with NBP Photon technology for exceptional colors, brighter highlights and increased contrast, advanced remote, high-speed 802.11ac wireless and Ethernet networking, and three HDMI 2.0a ports with HDCP 2.2.
TCL has also announced plans to bring to market the Alto soundbar family in both standard and "smart" solutions. It comes in sizes from 43- to 65-inches and also ships in spring for as-yet-undisclosed prices.