The Chromecast has made a huge blow in the stream TV idea Roku and Apple have been creating for the past few years. The Roku TV has become a well used product, even in the US, where Apple is normally dominant, but with the cheaper Chromecast option, the team needs to keep the feature set above the USB-dongle.
Google recently added a way to streaming locally stored content, after blocking a third party app and now Roku has hit back, adding this functionality to its Android application. The app will connect to the TV and allow playback through the box onto the TV, from the Android smartphone.
This feature did arrive on Roku’s iOS app quite a while ago and we have been awaiting its arrival on Android. It seems with Google’s recent update, it has elevated the importance of the update.
The problem with Roku’s new Android app is the lack of support on Android smartphones. Currently the app will work with Roku 3, Roku 2, Roku LT, Roku HD (model 2500) and Roku Streaming Stick. It will only run on a select number of Android devices, including the HTC One, Galaxy S4, Galaxy S3, Nexus 4 and Nexus 7.
Hopefully we will see more Android devices become supported, it is hard to get the support of the masses when there are thousands of Android smartphones with slightly different software and hardware to check out. With this type of update, the app developers need to look at every smartphone, not just Android in general.