Roku Redesigns its iPhone App, Adds Cross-Service Search
One of my favorite parts of the Roku interface — and one I’ve seen used in other interfaces, like those on the Xbox 360 and Xbox One — is its cross-service content search. This feature, which lets you look for a TV show or movie and see all the streaming services you can watch it on, has now come to Roku’s iPhone app thanks to an update put out today.
The new addition comes as part of a redesign that brought some new visuals and also squashed some bugs. You’ll be able to do all the same things you could do previously in the app, like controlling your Roku box and using your iPhone as a keyboard for entering text on the device. But being able to search across multiple streaming services, like Netflix, Amazon Prime Instant Video, and Hulu Plus is the big addition here.
I can navigate almost any app on my phone faster than I can navigate the menus of a streaming box, especially when I have a software keyboard at my disposal. So this new feature will undoubtedly help many people find the content they’re searching for more quickly.
It’s a smart move by Roku to keep its app fresh by adding new features. Google’s Chromecast has been pretty well received since its launch this past summer, and there are rumors swirling around that the Apple TV may soon get an update. Apple is also reportedly talking with Comcast about providing streaming cable TV for its box, which is something that the Roku doesn’t have at the moment. So the more value Roku can add to both its box and its companion app, the better.
You can download the updated Roku app from the App Store right now. If you check it out, let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.
[h/t 9 to 5 Mac]
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