Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Roku Review

A big part of being a successful delinquent is having a high quality selection of entertainment available to occupy the time you would otherwise spend vacuuming or dusting or delousing your children or whatever. While I am trying to give up my unMartha like ways, I will not give up my Roku box.

The Roku box is a small device that allows you to stream video directly to your television. Currently, Roku supports streaming from Netflix, Amazon VOD and MLB.com. We have only used the Netflix streaming however. Essentially, whatever you put on your Netflix instant viewing queue you can stream right to your TV.

Setup was very easy. I mean ridiculously easy. you plug the box into the TV and into the wall. It detects your Wi-fi (if you have it, if not you have to plug the box into your Internet somehow) and you are off to the races. Not only is set up easy, but the user interface is dreamy! My 3-year-old can find and start Blues Clues or a Scooby Doo movie all by himself.

We got our box about 3 weeks ago. At that time we canceled our expanded cable subscription and haven't looked back. The kids love to watch the cartoons provided by Netflix. Some of their current favorites are American Dragon, Avatar and Angela Anaconda movies.

I like that I get to choose what they can watch, or more importantly what they can't watch (ed, edd and eddy I'm looking at you). I appreciate the lovely selection of Showtime originals such as Dexter, Weeds and the Tudors as well as a bunch of great movies like Pineapple Express and Notting Hill.

New stuff is added all the time, so when I have finally watched all 141 selections currently on my queue there will certainly be new content waiting for me. There has also been talk of adding new channels (though you may have to pay extra for that). If/when Hulu is added I may never leave the house again.

Finally, I have the option to watch what I want when I want. I can pause, rewind or stop the movie and come back later (Netflix will remember where you left off even if you watch other shows before you get back). I also like the fact that my kids aren't bombarded by a million commercials, and I'm not bombarded by a million requests for sugar coated lard cube breakfast cereal or whatever the kids are eating now-a-days.

I don't have any financial incentive for touting Roku or Netflix - I'm just here to make your life more entertaining.

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