One of the more intriguing stories coming out of last week’s CES 2013 was the news that Voxx Accessories and Roku were teaming up on a hybrid digital antenna/Roku stick, that would release in Q4 of 2013.
Until very recently, alternatives to subscription-based broadcast cable had been relegated to the fringes of technology and few – if any – established entities were exploring that avenue in earnest. But by now the floodgates have opened, and instead of the steady drip we’re accustomed to, we’re likely to see a deluge of new ways to take in television.
This newest variant is interesting in that, Roku’s streaming stick was already positioned as a threat to cable service providers. Now that it’s been married with the ability to pull in additional content via antenna, it looks like something of a game-changer.
The new service would give users access to broader services like Netflix and Amazon Instant, specialized services like MLB.TV and HBO GO, and available over-the-air broadcast TV. Given all that content, you can essentially put together your own package, one that, depending on the services you choose to purchase, could cost significantly less than a bundled cable subscription.
At this point, roots have been ripped out and television’s future is up in the air. No one quite knows what the climate will look like when this device drops late this year, but one thing is clear: without undergoing a major face-lift, subscription-based cable won’t dominate the next quarter-century the way it dominated the last.
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