Roku just announced the Streambar, a tiny compact soundbar that's just 14 inches in length and weighs 2.4 pounds. It's essentially a smaller version of the Roku Smart Soundbar, which was released last year and costs $180. The Streambar has a built 4K HDR streaming player that supports Dolby Audio, which is equivalent to the Roku's $50 Streaming Stick+. This means that in addition to improving your TV's sound, it also has the power to turn your "dumb" TV into a "smart" TV that's able to stream apps like Netflix, HBO Max and Peacock (the latter of which Roku just rolled out this week).
The Streambar is a 2.0-channel soundbar that comes with four 1.9-inch full range drivers. It doesn't have quite the power or the soundstage of Roku's larger Smart Soundbar, which is also a 2.0-channel soundbar, but it has four 2.5-inch full range drivers. Like its larger sibling, the Streambar has HDMI Arc and optical connections, so it plugs into your TV via a single cable, so installation is super simple. The Streambar is compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant, and will be gaining support for Apple's HomeKit and AirPlay 2 later this fall. The Streambar also comes with Roku's popular Voice Remote.
The other neat thing is that Streambar is compatible the Roku's Wireless Speakers and Wireless subwoofer — you can sync them together so that you get a full sound system. This is great for people who already have Roku's other audio products, or for people who might want to upgrade to a more immersive sound system down the road.
The Roku Streambar is available for preorder right now and it's expected to hit shelves starting in mid-October.
Additionally, Roku made two other big announcements alongside the Streambar.
First, it announced that the Roku Channel is getting a free app for iOS and Android. The Roku Channel comes built into every Roku streaming device and gives people access to free movies and shows. The fact that it's getting a free app means that anybody can access its free movies and shows — no Roku streaming device needed.
And second, Roku announced a new updated model of its flagship Roku Ultra streaming device. It costs $100, which is the same price as the previous generation model, and comes with improved Wi-Fi performance, support Dolby Vision HDR (a first for a Roku streaming player) and an HDMI cable in the box (another first for a Roku streaming player). The new Roku Ultra is available for pre-order now, with it expected to hit shelves starting in mid-October.