Samsung Smart Media Player: An Expensive Roku Alternative

Illustration for article titled Samsung Smart Media Player: An Expensive Roku Alternative

Samsung has just announced its Smart Media Player, a Roku or Apple TV alternative that runs the company's Smart TV interface to provide all the streaming you need. Sadly, though, it seems to have priced itself outta the market.


Samsung's software allows the set-top box to run apps like Netflix, Hulu Plus abd HBO Go, but it is a little clunky to use. Add to that the fact that the thing costs $150—$50 more than an Apple TV and more than all the Roku devices—and it doesn't look like a great deal.

There might be one saving grace: Samsung points out that the box includes a cable card slot, so it could replace the device you rent from your cable company. But a TiVo would probably do that job far better. Sorry, Samsung: we think you missed this step. [PR Newswire via Verge]


Rodney McKay

I have a Roku 3 and a Samsung "smart" TV (which I'll bet shares all the "channels" of the new player). The Roku has many more channels available than does the Samsung, though there's a lot of repetition. The Samsung UI is much more annoying. Both run versions of Plex, so local media playback is good.

If you really want to cover yourself as much as possible without bothering with an HTPC, a combination of Roku 3 and Apple TV does just about everything you might want. There's a lot of overlap, but each has enough unique features to make it worthwhile (for me, anyway). I don't see how there's any need, or room, for anything else in the market, but I'm open to examples.