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CES: Westinghouse Digital to Stick Roku Into TVs

Westinghouse Digital will introduce a new line of LED TVs at next week’s 2013 International CES that will let users plug in the $100 Roku Streaming Stick, a flash-drive-sized Wi-Fi device to deliver Internet video to the televisions.

Westinghouse Digital’s “Roku Ready” line of LED TVs include support for the Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL) specification. Originally designed to let smartphones transfer content to TVs, MHL lets users to plug in a Roku Streaming Stick into the back of a TV to provide access to Internet video services, including Netflix, HBO Go, Disney, Fox News Channel, Amazon Instant Video, Hulu Plus, Pandora, UFC and Walmart’s Vudu.

Other products compatible with the Roku Streaming Stick are TVs from Best Buy’s Insignia brand, Apex Digital and Hitachi.

“The new Westinghouse TVs with Roku are designed to be future-proof," Westinghouse Digital senior vice president of marketing Rey Roque said. “Westinghouse Digital believes MHL-compliant displays are the future of the connected TV market. Consumers are no longer forced to buy a smart TV only to have it become outdated two years later when new technology is released." 

In addition to a 60-inch IPTV, Westinghouse Digital will introduce a line of edge-lit LED TVs with models ranging from 28 to 60 inches, as well as a new series of Ultra HD (a.k.a. 4K) models. 

Roku, whose investors include News Corp. and BSkyB, has sold more than 3 million of its set-top boxes since first introducing them in 2008. Its primary competitor is Apple’s $99 box, which provides access to services including Netflix, YouTube and iTunes.