The Roku Ultra bundle is now looking more like the Roku Dream Team, pairing the company’s best streaming player with its best remote, the Voice Remote Pro.
The reformulated bundle, at $99.99, will be available starting May 15, the company announced today. The original Ultra bundle, which also cost $99.99 at launch (it’s now listed for $89.99 on Roku’s website, but it’s out of stock) packed the step-down Roku Enhanced Remote.
A Roku rep said the original bundle with the older remote will be gradually phased out in favor of the new bundle.
The Voice Remote Pro, introduced last year as a $30 standalone purchase, is the first and only Roku remote with hands-free voice control (Hey Roku!) and a rechargeable battery.
Roku Voice Remote Pro
“We’re adding even more features to our most powerful player while keeping the price under $100,” says Chris Larson, Roku’s vice president of retail strategy, “ensuring that high performance is readily accessible.”
The Voice Remote Pro still isn’t quite dreamy enough to summon the local CBS affiliate on YouTube TV with a simple voice command–Roku gets you to a specific app, then you’re on your own–but it’s otherwise loaded with modern remote conveniences. You’ll find a headphone jack for private listening and even a tiny speaker that emits a sound in response to your cries for help (“Hey Roku, find my remote”). Two programmable shortcut buttons lock in your favorite voice commands. And, like any remote, it controls your TV’s power and volume.
Fortunately, the Voice Remote Pro needn’t hear everything. A slider switch on the side turns the microphone on or off.
The Roku Ultra supports a bevy of features including Dolby Vision, HDR10+, Dolby Atmos audio decode, Apple AirPlay 2, Bluetooth audio and an ethernet port. That said, our reviewed dinged the Ultra for its lack of a universal streaming guide, which is offered by such competitors as the Chromecast with Google TV and the TiVo Stream 4K.