The battle for the living room continues, as Roku, Google TV, and other platforms work to provide the best possible experience. Today, Roku has debuted Roku OS 11.5, which adopts some features that Google TV has long offered, such as “Continue Watching” and more.
Roku OS 11.5 brings even more Google TV features
Rolling out “over the coming months,” Roku OS 11.5 delivers a few key upgrades to the Roku software experience, much of it pulling from ideas that Google TV has been using for a while.
First on that list is “The Buzz,” a new section of the Roku homescreen, which will focus on content discovery. Video clips, interviews, trailers, and more will show up in this section. This section will also showcase the ability to see where content is available. Specific listings for each TV show or movie will show services where it can be watched, much like Google TV does.
Further, the “What to Watch” page is adding a “Save List” that works across the Roku homescreen and also through the app. Roku first unveiled this in its mobile app last year, but it didn’t work on the Roku itself until now.
Easily save movies and shows across channels on your Roku device with a press of a button to create a convenient collection of content to stream later. The platform-wide Save List is located within What to Watch on the Roku home screen menu as well as the Roku mobile app.
The other big new feature arriving on the Roku homescreen is “Continue Watching,” a new row that will show content that you’ve started watching and can easily come back to. The section ties into apps such as Netflix, HBO Max, and Paramount+, as well as The Roku Channel, which was available in Roku OS 10.5.
Android TV, and by extension Google TV, has offered this functionality since its “Oreo” redesign in 2018. The feature works in most major apps, though it occasionally doesn’t play very nicely. It’s also easily accessible in the UI, instead of needing to dive into a particular section.
Roku OS 11.5 also adds support for Bluetooth headphones, another feature Android TV has long offered, as well as new live TV categories. Roku further announced a new Roku Express and a wireless subwoofer today.
More on Roku:
- Roku refreshes affordable Express HD streamer, debuts all-new Wireless Bass subwoofer
- Roku streamers will start getting Walmart ads where you can buy directly from your TV
- Rumor: Roku could be bought out by Netflix
Author: Ben Schoon