Roku, a prominent company in the content streaming industry and whose software runs in nearly one-third of American smart TVs, is now shifting its focus towards the British market, which means that it is taking its rivalry with Amazon to the global scene.
Televisions with Roku TV will be marketed in the United Kingdom starting in the fourth quarter thanks to a partnership with Hisense, a Chinese company. And according to what Roku’s founder and chief executive Anthony Wood told Reuters, the plan is to expand to other European locations in the not-so-distant future.
A Harsh Market
The streaming and entertainment system has advanced and evolved a lot since its early days offering players for services such as Netflix, and is now licensing its operating system to power Internet-enabled TVs. However, making a profit in the market and keeping the software fresh is becoming increasingly harder.
Since 2017, Roku’s shares have gone up as the firm grew and reached more than 30 million American households while also arranging pacts and licensing deals with almost a dozen of TV companies. It is an aggregator of over 7,000 channels and represents one of the top entertainment options in the nation. People have used their stock and banking apps to reap the benefits of the firm’s performance in the last two years.
Wood stated at the IFA consumer electronics fair in Berlin (Germany) that Roku is the market leader in the United States by a sizable margin, and the company is about to get serious in its attempts to reach international success. He also observed that the alliance with Hisense in the UK could be a platform to reach other markets in Europe.
However, Roku faces stiff competition in the European market in the form of Amazon, a company that recently unveiled a series of deals at the IFA in order to bring its Fire TV device to European homes. Among the partnerships that the Silicon Valley giant struck were those with Toshiba, Grunding, and JVC.
An Alexa-Powered Model
Grundig, in particular, will have an Alexa-powered model. Alexa is Amazon’s digital voice assistant and will make it possible to provide voice commands to the TV to select the wanted shows.
Other high profile TV manufacturers like Samsung still manage their own operating systems. However, a showdown between Roku and Amazon is brewing up in the mid-range flatscreen field.
However, tech specialist Paolo Pescatore thinks that Roku may be at a crossroads because if a person wants to enjoy Youtube or Netflix, all it needs is a device. He thinks that there is no guarantee that Roku and its platform will thrive in the international market only because there is so much competition that may be easy to access.