It was only yesterday that our friend Dan Rayburn over at Streaming Media was talking down the impact that Internet-delivered video was making in the living room. Or to quote Rayburn himself, his guest post for GigaOm was intended to “set expectations properly”, based on official figures and various estimates, which suggest that consumer facing set-top boxes from the likes of TiVo, Sony, Microsoft, Apple, Roku and Vudu that are capable of delivering online video, have sold a lot less than what most people think.
While it surprised me the number was that high, it does seem possible, as that would equal about 1% of Netflix’s 8.2 million customers. Considering the price point ($99) and the fact that the product’s marketing is very focused, to a targeted audience, Roku’s penetration rate would be higher than the average product that has only been on the market for eight weeks. Plus, once you have the Roku box, the content is free.
Rayburn goes on to suggest that it won’t be long before the Roku box outsells the AppleTV (we don’t disagree), especially with the promise that the Roku player will soon support more than just Netflix. “This little device has some real potential to make a real impact in the market”, he says.