Making Home Theater as Easy to Use as a Roku Player

Roku is about to simplify home theater in the same way that they simplified streaming to the TV. Last week at CES 2020, Roku announced the Roku TV Ready certification program. The certification is available for soundbars and AV receivers, allowing them to integrate seamlessly with Roku TVs.

The Roku TV Ready program is a natural progression from the company’s foray into audio. Last year, Roku offered wireless speakers that were automatically discovered and set up by a Roku TV and a subwoofer that works with those speakers and well as the new Roku soundbar to create a more theater-like experience. (See my review here.)

“Our goal is to make the TV experience incredibly simple, accessible and fun,” said Roku VP Mark Ely. “And now, with this new program, we hope to make it super easy to set up and control soundbars and audio/video receivers using just a Roku TV remote.”

Audio systems with the Roku TV Ready certification will set up automatically on a Roku TV. Roku TV Ready devices are instantly discovered and configured by the Roku TV. By pressing the star (*) button on the Roku TV remote, users can access both the Roku TV and the sound device’s settings in one place.

TCL and Sound United, the parent company of Denon, Polk Audio, Marantz, Definitive Technology, and Classé, are the first audio partners in the Roku TV Ready program.

At their CES press conference, TCL announced the Roku TV Ready Alto 9+, a 3.1-channel soundbar that supports Dolby Atmos surround.

Commenting on Denon's partnership with Roku, Brendon Stead, Sound United's senior VP of product development, said: “The Roku TV Ready program enables Denon users to easily access Denon product features via the Roku TV Remote, among other features. In the name of seamless entertainment, this is a boon for watchers everywhere.”

Roku claims that in the first nine months of 2019, one in three TVs sold in the U.S. were Roku TVs, which explains why the company is planning for even more Roku models here and abroad. Current Roku TV brands include Hisense, Hitachi, InFocus, JVC, Magnavox, Philips, Polaroid, RCA, Sanyo, TCL, and Westinghouse. TCL announced the first 8K Roku TV at CES.

In the coming months, current Roku TVs will receive an update that includes Roku Ready Features. 

At the moment, Roku TV Ready certification is limited to soundbars. Time will tell how much Roku can simplify an AV Receiver for the average user.

emmstormintl's picture

Definitely going to be a big addition to someone's living room! It will really make TV experience a whole lot better. Well, if you're looking to maintain the cleanliness of your commercial space, discover more here!