Saturday, March 28, 2015

Roku UK Channel Store - Weekly RoundUp #107

Hi, everyone !!

There was CAUSE FOR CELEBRATION at the Roku Headquarters in Saratoga, CA this week when Frost & Sullivan made the announcement, VIA THIS PRESS RELEASE, that Roku had been deemed a "Global Streaming Media Devices Market Leader" and won the F&S "2015 Best Practices Award" in recognition of their achievements in the industry:-

Roku fought of stiff competition from the likes of Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Google Chromecast across a variety of factors to determine market leadership and performance excellence. Global President & Managing Partner at Frost & Sullivan, Krishna Srinivasan, said of the company: 

“In becoming the market share leader in the streaming media devices market, Roku has not only enhanced customer experience and engagement with its devices, but also nurtured a powerful competitive strategy.”

To read more about the particular areas of excellence in which F&S believe Roku succeeded in their bid to stay ahead of the competition I recommend you read the associated article, IN THIS POST, published via the "Official" Roku Blog. Our congratulations go out to the entire Roku team, as well as their associated business partners, for this very important achievement. WELL DONE EVERYONE!

FURTHER CAUSE FOR CELEBRATION... comes from the fact that there is still time for you to add the new(ish) channel for fans of wrestling on UK Roku devices, namely the 'WWE Network' channel, whose arrival was heralded in my "Roku UK Channel Store - Weekly RoundUp #97" post back in January. "So, what's so great about that?!", I hear you ask... well, those who choose to do so can then ENJOY "WRESTLEMANIA" this weekend FOR HALF-PRICE, compared to the price that Sky Box Office are asking for that one event, PLUS GET ONE MONTHS' ACCESS TO 'WWE NETWORK' on your UK Roku device(s) INCLUDED IN THE COST which (itself) is ONLY £9.99 "ALL-IN" !!

To DISCOVER MORE about the 'WWE Network' channel for Roku, you should make a point of visiting their "Official" website, FOUND HERE, which also includes details, VIA THIS LINK, of all the other devices on which you can watch the 'WWE Network' whenever your Roku is not to hand. If you have any further questions about the 'WWE Network' channel for Roku devices, then feel free to send a tweet to their "Official" Twitter Feed: @AskWWENetwork for support and answers. If you're a fan of WWE... and I know, from last year, there were a lot of you asking when the 'WWE Network' channel would be added to UK Roku devices... IT'S NOT TOO LATE for you to add the channel, show your support, and say "thank you" to the 'WWE Network' for delivering the channel as promised, so UK fans of WWE can enjoy "Wrestlemania 31" and all other BIG EVENTS in the WWE calendar for 2015 (and beyond!) - including highlights of the "Royal Rumble" from earlier this year - by streaming content from the 'WWE Network' channel on their favourite streaming media players !!

PLEASE NOTE:- That the START TIMES of "5 ET" for the "Kick-Off" and "7 ET" for the main "Wrestlemania" programme ARE EASTERN STANDARD TIME (i.e. New York) so UK viewers will need to allow for the time-difference between BST in UK and that of the East Coast in USA when settling down to watch "Wrestlemania 31" this weekend. Likewise, the $9.99 cost for 'WWE Network' quoted in the above promo is in U.S. Dollars (USD) for subscribers in USA... whereas those watching in the UK can expect to pay £9.99 GBP (British Pounds) for a UK subscription to the channel. Either way, it's still cheaper than what Sky are charging for the Box Office event and, better yet, the amount you save could go towards another month-long subscription to 'WWE Network', if you so choose!

Meanwhile... in honour of "Wrestlemania 31" this weekend, I've decided to publish details for another Roku private channel which should (hopefully) appeal just as much to fans of the sport. However, rather than the household names associated with the 'WWE Network', the 'UEW Channel' features lesser-known (though equally entertaining) wrestling talent who (collectively) share similar rivalries and provide just as much action as their big-name counterparts from the WWE and their ilk.

A WORD OF WARNING: Whereas the 'WWE Network' offers family-friendly entertainment, the big difference here is that ADULT LANGUAGE IS NOT EDITED-OUT from 'UEW Channel' content and you will soon discover that swearing is used quite liberally during both matches and interviews. So, despite the 'Channel Add' screenshot (shown below) appearing to suggest that the 'UEW Channel' is suitable for "All Ages"... PARENTAL DISCRETION IS ADVISED prior to viewing. Needless to say, if you are easily offended by these things (or don't wish for younger family members to be exposed to such "colourful" language) you should bear this in mind before adding it! ;-)

ADD "UEW Channel" PRIVATE CHANNEL to Roku device(s) VIA THIS LINK: UEW Channel

Or, LOGIN to your Roku Account, AS NORMAL, and SCROLL DOWN the page, until you come TO the 'MANAGE ACCOUNT' section, CLICK the link TO 'ADD A PRIVATE CHANNEL' and then USE ACCESS CODE: uewchannel

This channel will likely appeal to fans of "indie" wrestling, who prefer the up-close and personal feel of local gymnasiums / small halls as opposed to the arenas / stadiums associated with more mainstream events (such as those offered by the 'WWE Network' channel). The format for much of the content which can be found on the UEW (Underground Empire Wrestling) Channel comes via a weekly internet television (i-TV) show which features UEW wrestling events, exclusive interviews and other content available only by tuning in to their weekly programming. The show, “Underground iTV”, is a free on-demand show released every Tuesday night at 6pm (local time) meaning UK viewers would be better-off leaving it until Wednesday morning each week before attempting to stream new episodes. Those interested can discover more about the 'UEW Channel' by visiting the "Official" website for the private Roku channel, FOUND HERE, for more information. Meanwhile... those looking to connect with the people behind the "UEW Channel" for Roku, on a more "social" level, can do via their Facebook Page: UEW Channel (Facebook) as well as their Twitter Feed: @uewunderground where, in addition to discussing "underground" wrestling, valuable feedback on the channel can be provided.

Another Roku private channel that came to light recently was 'Picasa2' which (perhaps) unsurprisingly is a revamped version of 'Picasa Web Albums' currently still available as a "public" channel via the "Official" Roku Channel Store in all regions. Details for the 'Picasa2' private channel were first made known, VIA THIS THREAD, on Roku Forums. Unlike the bug-riddled 'Picasa Web Albums' channel, 'Picasa2' is a fully-working updated version of the original with the added benefit of conforming to the new authentication scheme implemented by Google. So, if you're among those affected by the issues with 'Picasa Web Albums', you may want to give 'Picasa2' a try - as it's essentially a duplicate of that channel, but with all of the bugs now (thankfully) ironed out!

ADD "Picasa2" PRIVATE CHANNEL to Roku device(s) VIA THIS LINK: Picasa2

Or, LOGIN to your Roku Account, AS NORMAL, and SCROLL DOWN the page, until you come TO the 'MANAGE ACCOUNT' section, CLICK the link TO 'ADD A PRIVATE CHANNEL' and then USE ACCESS CODE: picasa2

Whilst they may be no match for the ten private channels, details of which I shared in an earlier post: "Roku UK Channel Store - Weekly RoundUp #96", the TWO PRIVATE ROKU CHANNELS (outlined above) - encompassing footage of local "indie" wrestling events from Southern California (UEW Channel), plus the ability to view your Picasa Web Albums and slideshows of your photos, as well as your favourite "community" snapshots, and images selected from keywords (Picasa2) - will still provide a (slight) boost to the range of content available for UK Roku owners to add to their devices. Better yet... is that both of the above "private channels" come with an ADDED BONUS that they're (currently) UNAVAILABLE ON NOWTVBox FROM 'NowTV' and, unlike "public channels", these hidden, secret or beta Roku channels are not in the Roku Channel Store either !!

As mentioned in previous weeks... I will, generally speaking, publish details of the access codes (plus any additional info) for the ROKU PRIVATE CHANNEL(S) that I come across via the companion Twitter Feed: @ukrokuchannels for this blog, before I provide those details (if at all) on these pages. So, if you're on the lookout for some EXTRA CHANNELS to add to your Roku streaming media device(s), which are NOT IN THE "Official" ROKU CHANNEL STORE, then you're better off signing-up for a Twitter Account and choosing to "follow" the tweets of UK Roku Channels (see link above) so that you remain "in the know" about these "hidden", "beta", or "secret" channels !!

Anyway, before I proceed with listing the current crop of new channels (plus providing links to their associated reviews) for this particular 'Weekly RoundUp'... a brief reminder that, whilst I had hoped I'd be able to catch-up on the missing Roku-related news from this blog in recent weeks, all the extra work I've been burdened with of late means it remains unlikely that I'll be fully caught-up anytime soon. Until I do find the time... my one saving grace is that (as mentioned previously) I have somehow managed to remain up-to-date with all the latest additions to the "New" category of the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store and will endeavour to flesh-out what's missing ASAP! Admittedly, there are quite a few articles that I need to catch up on but, rather than post links for individual weeks, I'll simply refer you back to my "Roku UK Channel Store - Weekly RoundUp #78", which contains all of the pertinent information you might need when researching back over the items in question. Again, I'm sorry this has dragged-on (far) longer than anticipated, and apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused you, but (all being well) things will be back up to speed soon!

For now... all I can offer you is a brief summary of the latest additions to the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store from the past seven days. As with my other recent posts, you can expect any additional Roku-related news from the past week, along with details of any changes to the channel selection found on NowTV Boxes, to be added at some point in the near future. As for "mending" all of the "broken" links from previous 'Weekly RoundUp' posts, I still can't put a time-scale on how long that is going to take but (like I said before) if you "copy" the existing link(s) and change the "http" prefix to "https", as well as removing the "forward slash" between 'channels' and '#!details', so that "channels#/!details" becomes "channels#!details" in each weblink, you should find that they will all work for you and redirect to the new-look version of each individual channel description. As with the last twenty 'Weekly RoundUp' posts, every link from this week (plus all future posts) will use the new format, so it's only those from 'Weekly RoundUp #1' up as far as 'Weekly RoundUp #86' which you'll have to amend... at least, until I can edit/repair the links for you !!

Still, with all the "missing" Roku-related news (and links) yet to follow, let's now press on with the current 'Weekly RoundUp' of NEW ADDITIONS to the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store. This time there are THREE NEW CHANNELS which have been added during the preceding seven day period. These latest additions to the channel line-up provided FRESH CONTENT in both the Games, and Internet TV genres (i.e. categories). Specifically... this means that no less than TWO EXTRA CHANNELS in the "Games" category and ONE EXTRA CHANNEL in the "Internet TV" genre - all of which combine to make-up the selection of new choices added to the channel store on UK Roku devices during this past week. 

In keeping with previous installments from the 'Weekly RoundUp' series, details of these new channels have been listed below, together with links to obtain further information {by clicking on the channel name(s) beneath the respective channel icon(s) as pictured} and to read a 'Roku Guide' review with an independent (slightly more expansive) assessment of each one:-

DOWNFALL [N.B. Roku3 ONLY].............COST: £1.49 (ONE-OFF PAYMENT) [Roku Guide Review]

TRIVIA TV...................................................COST: £1.49 (ONE-OFF PAYMENT) [Roku Guide Review]

OBSKURA TV.................................................COST: £1.49 (MONTHLY) [Roku Guide Review]

PLEASE NOTE:- That the 'Obskura TV' channel for Roku devices, developed by 'BlackFlagTV', is a MONTHLY SUBSCRIPTION purchase with recurring payments. As such, if you choose to subscribe to this channel, YOU WILL BE CHARGED £1.49 PER MONTH and will continue to be charged in this manner UNTIL YOU CANCEL YOUR SUBSCRIPTION. It is also worth noting, before you subscribe, that ALL PAYMENTS ARE NON-REFUNDABLE !!


Anyhow, like it or not, that is your lot for this week and, whilst it doesn't quite match-up to the four channels which made it into the "Official" Roku USA Channel Store during that time - or (perhaps) five, if you include the recently rebranded 'TMRO' (pronounced "tomorrow") formerly 'Spacevidcast' - it's better to have 3 NEW CHANNEL CHOICES as shown above, than none at all, don't you think?!

Meanwhile... hopefully everyone in the UK with a Roku player managed to find something they like within the three "public" channels or else the "private" channels, whose access codes were "gifted" to you above as well as via the companion Twitter Feed to this blog, at various points throughout the last seven days. Even so, if you didn't find anything to add to your Roku channel selection from the assortment of channels on offer this week, you'll just have to pay us a visit another time when, with any luck, there will be something more to your liking. Afterall, there's no point installing every channel because like I say... when it comes to adding new channels to your Roku, IT'S YOUR CHOICE and, as with all things Roku... THE CHOICE IS ALWAYS YOURS !!


As mentioned earlier in this post, you can expect my usual summary of all the goings-on (or not) in the (severely restricted) Roku Channel Store that features on NowTV Boxes to follow in the near future. Meanwhile, whether you happen to own a Roku player, a NowTV Box, OR BOTH, as I do... be sure to check my previous posts (as mentioned above) for all the new additions to the "Official" Roku UK Channel Store in each of the thirty-four preceding weeks and then come back again in seven days' time for my next 'Weekly RoundUp'. However, if you can't wait that long, remember you can always keep up with all the UK Roku action (as it happens) throughout the coming week, by following the companion Twitter Feed: @ukrokuchannels where up-to-the-minute info on all things Roku-related (here in the UK) is posted on a daily basis (well, almost).

Until the next time, then...

That's all folks !!