TCL’s Roku TV offers good mix of streaming, local channels
by RICH DEMURO
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One of the most popular questions I'm getting these days has to do with cord cutting. People want to cut the cord but don't want to lose local programmings like their favorite news channels and sports.
Now, with new TV's from TCL, you don't have to sacrifice much. They showed me two new models - the P and C series - that combine the latest features, streaming apps and an antenna input for local channels.
The best part is that you don't need to switch inputs to go from a local, over the air channel, to a streaming service like HBO. Everything is on one screen. Keep in mind, while you can pause live TV for up to 90 minutes if you plug in a flash drive, you cannot record shows like a DVR.
"We don't believe that people come home and say 'Hey, I want to watch HDMI 1.' People come home and they want to watch HBO or they want to watch their local news. That should be on the same level to us," explained Chris Larson, Senior Vice President, TCL North America.
Roku is a pioneer in streaming media - they offered one of the earliest set top streaming boxes. They have pretty much every app covered - Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Sling, DIRECTV NOW, Starz and more. I also like their universal search function so you can find where items are streaming across many of your apps.
Another neat feature is the remote control. There is quick, one button access to Netflix, Sling, Hulu and Starz, but also a headphone jack. This lets you listen to your on-screen content with headphones so you don't disturb someone in another room, like sleeping kids or a spouse.
This isn't the first Roku TV from TCL - they've made them for a few years now. This year's models include better picture quality with the addition of HDR technology. They support both Dolby Vision and generic HDR.
"The picture quality is second to none. When you look at our televisions compared to our competitors, you will find tremendous value without sacrificing performance," said Larson.
If you're wondering about TCL, they are relatively new to the United States, but they are a huge electronics giant based out of China, where they have been operating for decades.
"We make everything from the panel, to the backlight to the module to the finished product. It allows us not only speed to market by developing all the way through, but cost advantages that our competitors can't match," concluded Larson.