mdillard9 wrote:Will someone please explain to me the difference between using a Roku device that I see here on Woot all the time and just getting a blu-ray player with built-in Netflix/Pandora/etc. for not much more money? Am I missing something about the Roku?
The Blu-Ray player will be able to play Blu-Ray disks, for the obvious one. For the less obvious difference, the Roku is set up in such a way that developers can actually create their own "channels" in order to stream content, giving you a fairly nice selection of additional content to try out other than just Netflix/Hulu/etc. Some of the content is free, while some you have to pay for. Some of the Roku channels are streamed in 3D if you have a television that can support that.
Here's a list of just some of the channels available, but I believe there are also additional "private" channels that you can find around various parts of the internets in which you simply enter the code given on the website into your Roku device and it installs that channel for you:
I want to add that this is one of the first models of the Roku player. This is actually a *good* thing in that (I believe) it is the only model which supports S-Video and component cables, along with that fact that it is only one of 2 or 3 models which has a USB port for accessing content from a USB device. It also has an ethernet port, which some of the newer Roku devices do not have. (I think only the highest model of the Roku 2 has an ethernet port.) *EDIT2.. I'm wrong about some of this, so here's a model comparison:
*EDIT: I want to add another benefit of the Roku: It's TINY. For someone like me who has enough devices on a fairly small TV stand, it's perfect. Here's a picture of my setup, with the Roku (mine is a Roku XDS purchased from an earlier woot sale) hanging near the right on the drawer so that you can distinguish it from (what I just realized is) all that black:
I now see Woot is tempting me with a TiVo, though. Must resist.